Have you ever wanted to make a goals journal?
Journaling your goals and dreams can help you to get crystal clear on what you are trying to achieve or create in your life.
Goals and dreams tend to shift over time. So, it helps you to reflect on your goals and dreams frequently. And that’s where a goals journal can help.
You may have daily goals, weekly goals, lifetime goals, etc. And all different types of goals, from travel goals to financial goals, fitness goals, and more.
No matter how big or how small, all your goals and dreams matter if they tug at your heart. If they spark a desire of curiosity, excitement, hope, or love. Laying them all out on the table, so to speak, is a great way to get clear on how you can reach those goals and dreams.
So, let’s discuss how to easily start a goal journal. Get goal journal ideas, thoughts about how to organize your plans, and examples of goal journaling.
Lastly, read through 25 deep, thoughtful goal journal prompts to help you achieve success. A free PDF printable goal journal prompts worksheet is included at the end of this article.
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How to start a goal journal
Try these simple steps to start a goal journal:
- Find a quiet place free of distractions.
- Start with a “brain dump.” This could be a few sentences or bullet points. Write about anything on your mind.
- Once you’ve gotten warmed up with writing, revisit your goals in your mind. Think them over carefully.
- Then begin writing them down.
There are many types of goals, so that’s why it’s important to identify your goals before journaling them.
One idea is to list the goal “categories” (or aspects of life) you want to focus on first. Then, place the goals you want to achieve into your categories. For example, a category might be “health.” Under “health,” you might write “exercise” or “sleep better.”
You could also list your goals in order of importance. Or just write them in no particular order.
Goal journal ideas
Here are some goal ideas for goal setting:
- Health and wellness goals.
- Personal development goals.
- Creative goals.
- Financial goals.
- Family goals.
- Business, career, or school goals.
- Relationship goals.
- Travel goals.
- Educational goals.
- Reading list goals.
Ways to journal about your goals
You can make a bullet journal list for goal planning. Or write long, rambling sentences. Even doodle your goals. It’s up to you! Journal about your goals in the way that you best communicate to yourself. There’s no right or wrong.
You may want to write out a daily goal plan, a weekly goal plan, a monthly, year plan, or a life goal plan. You don’t have to do this, but some people find time frames helpful for motivation.
When you’re done, read over everything and see if you need to add anything or take anything away. Remember that you can rewrite your goals anytime you want.
How a goals journal can help you reach success
1. Understand your motivation
A goals journal helps you to get total clarity on what emotions are motivating your goals.
For each person, there are many emotions that act as motivational factors behind a goal or desire.
When you look closely, you will discover motivational factors you may not have been aware of at first. Learning what they are can help you know which goals are worth setting or reaching.
When journaling, ask yourself if your goal setting is based on something positive like wellness, life improvement, or life experience. If not, that’s something to think about. You may not want negative emotions such as fear or insecurity to be the driving force of your motivation.
2. Reveal your blocks
In addition to revealing the thoughts and emotions behind our goals, journaling goals can show you what is blocking you from your goals. Sometimes, you will discover circumstances must change before you can reach a certain goal. For example, you may have to move, end a relationship, or break a bad habit.
It may also be that you need to form a new routine, do some meditative inner work, or learn something new. Your mindset may need some attention. It all depends on your goals. Journal writing is an effective way to uncover and examine the changes you need to make, and any success blockers.
3. Take action and manifest
Once you have clarity on what your goals are, the thoughts and emotional energy that motivates you, and any success blockers, then you can truly get to work. Time to make things happen!
With a clear mind and your goal journal revealing your true inner thoughts, your energy to manifest is much more powerful. You can write out a plan to achieve your goals and dreams. Then make them your reality!
Journaling your goals and dreams is an affirmation of your intentions. And that is powerful. Journal writing takes abstract thoughts about what you want and solidifies them into physical reality. Think of it this way: first you write your goals into this reality. From mind to paper. Like a sketch on a canvas. Then you begin painting (actually doing the work) to achieve your goals.
An example of how a goal journal can help you reach success
Say my goal is to lose 15 pounds and feel amazing about myself. Here is how journaling about this goal can help and what it might look like:
Goal: I want to lose 15 pounds so I can look and feel amazing.
Energy and emotions behind my goal:
Positive: I’m driven by loving myself and wanting to be the best version of myself. I feel Ok with how I am, but I could improve. Yes, there are times I don’t like how I look, but that’s normal. Overall, I do appreciate my body. I want to be healthier.
Negative: I’m worried about having to avoid certain foods like ice cream. I want to enjoy food and life. I’m afraid I’ll never be able to lose weight without starving myself. I might never be in my ideal body and never feel the confidence I want to feel and that makes me discouraged.
What I learned and how it helps me plan for success
With my goal setting written out, I notice some positive aspects of my mindset. But also how I hold the belief that I can’t have something I want without suffering for it. And that maybe I simply can’t have it at all.
The mindset change I clearly need is to believe that I can achieve my goal in a way that is easy. I need to let go of fears of deprivation and impossibility. Now I can write a plan for my weight loss goal:
- Eat simple paleo meals.
- Avoid snacking, but still, have chocolate.
- Take a one-mile walk 5 days per week and lift weights every other day.
- Make sure my mindset and emotions are aligned with ease and success.
- Lastly, be consistent and stick with my plan for at least 4 weeks.
25 Goal Journal Prompts
- What would you most like to create in your life or the biggest changes you feel you need?
- Journal your goals in order of importance.
- What would you like your lifestyle to be day to day? How do you want to spend your time?
- Describe what lifestyle factors might be holding you back from your goals. Money, health, location, or support network for example? Or something else?
- Are there any fears, anxieties, insecurities, or negative thoughts you carry about your goals?
- Which goals or dreams feel unrealistic to you and why?
- And which feels most do-able?
- What mindset practices could help you achieve your goals and dreams? For example, meditation, forgiveness, being present, giving yourself grace, etc. Describe in detail.
- Why are your goals important to you?
- How motivated or determined are you to reach your goals and dreams? How strong are your feelings about each goal?
- What do you tell yourself about your goals and dreams? What words do you think when you think of your goals?
- Journal what your friends and family say about your goals and dreams. How helpful or unhelpful are they? (Regardless, you have to be your own cheerleader, but it’s good to notice.)
- What will happen in your life and how will you feel when you reach your goals?
- How “set in stone” is each goal? Do you see fluidity or any other possibilities? How open are you to change? (Because life changes. Not that it will, but it’s good to acknowledge “going with the flow”.)
- Describe how your spiritual beliefs affect your goals.
- How can you take steps toward your goals and dreams each day? Journal a daily goal plan.
- What steps can you take each week, month, or year toward your goals? Journal a “birds-eye view” type plan for your chosen timeframe.
- Write some positive words of encouragement to yourself.
- Journal all the happy feelings that come when you visualize reaching your goals.
- Are there ways you can conjure up those same feelings now, to help manifest or speed along the process of reaching your goals? (This is a manifestation method- try to feel the emotion of having what you want and that will help you to get what you want!)
- How can you enjoy the present moment now, before you reach your goals? And how will doing so help you reach those goals?
- What dreams are so big you’d be embarrassed to share? Or any dreams you don’t dare to dream? What seems impossible?
- Write about why you can reach your goals. Advocate for yourself.
- How much do you have on your plate right now? What are your responsibilities and priorities? Is there anything you need to let go of or put on the back burner so you can reach your goals?
- What must you learn or experience before you can reach your goals and dreams?
Download the goal journal prompts below
Download and print out these journaling prompts to use anytime. And feel free to share with anyone working on goal setting and success.
Concluding thoughts on journaling goals
I hope you enjoyed this deep dive into making a goal journal and writing about your goals. Really, there is no right or wrong way to journal about goals or about anything.
The journal prompts are simply meant to be starting points for you. Some may be relevant, some may not be. But I do hope they helped.
Don’t be too hard on yourself with whatever feelings come up as you write about your goals. I’ve discovered so many blocks to different goals and plans through journaling about them. It’s just a matter of working through those blocks, making adjustments, and deciding what is most important when goal setting. A positive growth mindset helps greatly.
Enjoy! And have a lovely day!
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