The new year is a natural time to pause and think about what we might want to change in the year ahead. Before setting new year’s resolutions and goals, it’s important to take some time to reflect on what went well last year, as well as what didn’t go quite as planned. Mindful journaling is an excellent tool to reflect on what worked and what didn’t, discover our deeper desires and dreams, and make new goals and intentions. Accessing a list of mindful journaling prompts can be a fun and powerful way to find the clarity, insight, and ease for a new year’s journaling and goal setting practice.
Why use mindful journaling?
Journaling can be a powerful tool to support a mindfulness, yoga or meditation practice. It helps us to focus on the things we need to improve upon, and it also allows us to see ourselves clearly. When we write about our experiences, we gain insight into who we are and what we value. This can be incredibly useful in reflecting on the past year, and helping us decide about our future. Journaling is a great way to figure out what our growth opportunities and goals should be. It’s also a great way to make sure we don’t forget about them when they come around again next year!
Mindful journaling prompts for the New Year
We’ve broken down our list of mindful journaling prompts into two categories, reflecting on the past and looking to the year ahead. We recommend choosing a handful of writing prompts from both to guide your New Year’s journaling. After you’ve selected your list of questions to focus on, plan a time to sit down for your journaling session. Make sure there will be no distractions, and feel free to create a ritual by lighting candles, playing music, burning incense, chanting mantras, or maybe even a fire ceremony. You might want to start with a meditation or yoga practice to help ground and center yourself before writing.
12 Prompts to reflect on the past year
Reflecting on the past is an excellent way to get yourself thinking about what has been going well and what hasn’t. You may have made progress in certain areas of your life, but if you’re feeling stuck or unhappy with something, this is the perfect time to look back at the last year with compassion, curiosity and mindfulness.
What were my biggest successes in the last year? What goals did I achieve?
What challenges did I face last year? How did I overcome them?
What changes did I make in my life last year? How did they affect me?
What word best summarizes this last year? Why?
What is something that has helped me grow this year?
What were my biggest lessons from last year?
How did my yoga and meditation practice grow over this past year?
What do I want to remember most from this year? What is my favorite memory?
What is my happiest moment of the year? What is my saddest moment?
Was there anything that I perceived as a failure but now can perceive as a gift?
Who inspired me the most this year and why?
Who encouraged or supported me the most this year?
14 Prompts to look ahead to the new year
Mindfully journaling about the year ahead is a great way to help you set goals and aspirations for the coming year. If you’ve already written your goals, you can review those and add additional ones. If you have written nothing down yet, now is a great time to mindfully reflect on your thoughts and feelings for the year ahead.
What things do I want to learn or experience in the next year?
What are my hopes and dreams for the next year?
What are my most significant weaknesses, and what can I do to improve them?
What can I do this year to bring me closer to my ideal life?
What are my top fears and concerns for the next year? How are these fears holding me back?
What can I do to become more present and mindful in my life?
What can I do or change to create more joy, happiness and peace in my life?
What will bring me an increased sense of calmness, contentment, and spirituality?
What will bring me deeper compassion, connection, and understanding?
Who do I need to forgive and where do I need to let go of anger, frustration and resentment?
Are there any bad habits I want to change? What good habits would I like to start this new year?
Are there any self-care, health and wellness practices I’d like to try this year?
What would make my life more fulfilling and rewarding?
What would bring me greater wisdom and insight?