Writing/journaling is such an important part of my self-care and healing process that it made sense to me to share prompts with you to try and inspire you to write more.
Journaling can be a very powerful tool in the healing process when it is done correctly and with focused intention. That is why for trauma survivors journaling prompts are so important. Too often, we can get lost in the weeds of our trauma when we free hand our writing (not that you can’t benefit from an occasional trauma dump into your journal) but with the help of prompts we can focus our thoughts and create a resource for reflection and data collection as you heal your wounds.
How Does This Work?
Take the following prompts and write each one at the top of the page in your journal for each day of the coming week beginning today. When you sit down to journal, remember to reflect on what you have already written to this point, and then write only about the prompt for the day.
This helps keep your thoughts focused as you process and unpack whatever the prompt manifests for you.
I hope this helps you create a seamless and beneficial practice for self-care and healing.
Journaling Prompts: Dealing with Adversity
What is one of the biggest challenges that you have overcome recently? Was it challenging physically, mentally, emotionally, or a combination of the three? How did it feel in your body, what did your thoughts sound like? How did you redirect yourself?
What is a survival skill that shows up often during times of heightened stress or anxiety that you wish you could manage better? What do you do, how do you feel, and what do your thoughts sound like when this survival skill takes over? Do you realize during the episode or after? How can you support yourself with gentle redirection when this happens?
How do you respond when you are in the middle of something and a sudden obstacle interrupts your rhythm and threatens the successful completion of your project? How does it feel in your body and what do your thoughts tell you? What emotions become present and how do you work through the change with yourself?
Think about a time when you tried to accomplish something and were unable. This can be an attempt at boundaries, communication, or a project that you didn’t complete. What was the experience like emotionally, and what did you learn about yourself, your limitations, and your ability to persevere afterwards in spite of it?
Have you ever experienced a time when you were certain you would not achieve a goal you set for yourself and then did? Write about the experience. What surprised you about yourself and how did it feel afterwards?
Journaling Prompts: Leaning Into Your True Self
What or who in life is your biggest motivation? What does this motivation feel like in your body and sound like in your thoughts? What does this motivation look like in your everyday life? How can you bring this feeling and these practices into other areas of your life where you feel less motivated?
What is something that you are really good at? How do you feel when doing this activity or skill? Is this something that is innate in you, a skill you have learned and honed, or both? Do you make enough time in your life to do this activity or skill? If not, set an intention to do this more.
When was a time in your life when you found yourself in a role of leadership? A work situation, a school project, planning a friend’s party. How did it feel to be in that role? Did it feel overwhelming or natural? Did you choose the role or was it forced on you? Reflect on your writing and think back to childhood, are there any similarities or connections?
When someone offers constructive criticism, how does it make you feel? Can you accept it or does it make you feel defensive, overwhelmed, or not good-enough? Where do you feel it in your body, what does it sound like in your head? How do you manage this type of situation and support yourself through it?
Are you extra hard on yourself when you are triggered or have a trauma response? Or are you too easy on yourself, to the point of enabling behaviors that are a disservice to you? Have you found the balance? Write about the way that you react, respond, and support yourself through symptoms of CPTSD.
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A 2-Week Guided E-Journal: Dealing with Adversity & The True Self
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