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This article is written by a student writer from the Her Campus at OSU chapter.

Journaling, for some, can be like a form of therapy. It can be an outlet to release bottled up feelings and put your thoughts into words. 

We’ve all been in the position, however, of staring at a blinking cursor or a blank notebook page and having no idea where to start or what to write about. 

You’ll have the pen in one hand, a notebook on your lap and so many thoughts in your head, but for some reason you can’t bring yourself to put the pen to the paper. 

I have been in this position countless times. Enough times, in fact, that I made a list of journal prompts to help get the ideas flowing. 

So break out the blank notebook, and let’s get to writing.

  1. Write about a topic you are passionate about. Why are you passionate about this topic? Maybe it’s a political issue, a civil rights issue or the career you want to pursue. What’s that one topic that really sets your heart on fire? Write about it, and write about what you think created this passion within you.
  2. Write about someone you are grateful for in your life. We, in life, are very lucky to have the opportunity to come across influential people who have life-long impacts on us. Write about your best friends, siblings, grandparents, a professor or a co-worker who helped you get through some terrible shifts all those years ago. Who has inspired you and left a mark on you in life? And, if they don’t know they’ve influenced you so much and you are able to, maybe call them up after you write this entry and tell them how much they’ve impacted you in life. I’m sure it will mean more than you know!
  3. Write about an event in your life that has positively impacted you and an event that has negatively impacted you. Take some time to journal and reflect on a personal hard-ship you have experienced in your life, letting out any built up feelings you need to release. Then, reflect on a happy memory you have experienced. It can be something as small as the day you discovered your favorite song, or as big as the day you graduated college, got your dream job or even met the love of your life. Regardless, take time to appreciate the highs in life while simultaneously reflecting on the lows that have made you who you are.
  4. Write about the most vivid dream you’ve ever had. Do you think there was any meaning behind it? We seem to forget most dreams the second we open our eyes, but sometimes there is one dream that sticks out vividly in our brain. I have a few dreams, back from when I was a child even, that I just never forgot. Write about yours in as much detail as you can.
  5. What is one movie or book that you really connected with? Why did it impact you so deeply? Sometimes, books and movies impact us more than we expected. We might connect with the story, the writing, the protagonist or even the antagonist. Books and movies have the power to take us into their world, touch us and change our perspective. What book or movie has had this influence on you?
  6. Write about any five things that are happening in your life right now. You can write about five things you’re currently grateful for, five reasons you are proud of yourself right now or even your favorite foods at the moment. We tend to dwell on the past or worry too much about the future. For right now, do not think about the past or agonize over how the future will work out. The purpose of this prompt is to get you to focus on the present, and even if just for one journal prompt, live in it.
  7. Write 5-10 things you’re grateful for. This one is pretty simple, so don’t overthink it. What are you grateful for? Including the “little” things that we take for granted.
Ohio State 2023.