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60 New Year Journal Prompts: Reflect, Set Goals & Focus

The new year is a time for reflection, goal setting, and focus. Journaling is the perfect way to do all three.

By taking the time to reflect on your past year, set goals for the new year, and focus on what’s important to you, you can start the new year off on the right foot.

Journaling is an incredibly powerful mindfulness tool used by many people, and one that is growing in popularity (we love it!).

If you want to take some time to reflect on the last year and plan for the new year, or if journaling is something you do regularly (or want to), using these new year journal prompts can help you challenge your thought process and have a deeper sense of awareness of yourself.

Why Use Journal Prompts?

While you could simply sit down and write a journal entry for the new year, chances are you’d likely miss out on some key aspects that could be explored and would be incredibly beneficial for you to journal about.

Journaling prompts are one of the best ways to start your journal entries as they allow you to address different issues and answer questions you may not have thought about or may have overlooked.

By answering these questions, you can get a better understanding of the year that has been, and what you want to achieve in the new year, as well as a deeper self-awareness of where you are right now.

Using the journal writing prompts, you’ll likely write about new things, gain more mental clarity, and be able to focus on an area of your life that you may miss in a regular journaling practice.

The Benefits Of New Year Journaling

Journaling is a powerful tool that can help you gain clarity, release emotions, and connect with your inner wisdom.

It’s also a great way to track your progress and celebrate your wins.

Not only that, but mindful journaling is also a great way to relieve stress and anxiety.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed by all that the new year entails, take a few minutes to sit down and write out your thoughts. You’ll feel better for it!

When it comes to journaling for the new year, or at the beginning of the year, there are 3 key benefits we love:

It Allows You To Reflect On The Past Year

One of the best things about journaling is that it allows you to reflect on your past year. What went well? What didn’t go well? What did you learn?

By answering these questions, you can get a better understanding of what you want to achieve in the new year.

It’s important to make sure you spend some time celebrating your wins and giving yourself credit for all of the things you did well and that you did achieve.

We often focus quickly on the things that went wrong, but spending some time focusing on the good can help to increase your motivation and confidence going into the new year.

It also helps you to clear out some of the mental clutter from the previous year, meaning you can focus on the new beginnings that happen at this time of year.

It Helps You Set Goals For The New Year

Another great benefit of journaling is that it helps you to set new goals for the upcoming year.

By taking the time to reflect on your past year and what you want to achieve in the new year, you can start to set new year goals that are realistic and achievable (rather than new year’s resolutions that rarely ever last beyond January).

Think about what you want to achieve in the new year, personally, spiritually, mentally, and professionally. What steps do you need to take to get there? What do you need to let go of?

Writing down your goals is a great way to increase your chances of achieving them. Make sure to review your goals regularly and adjust them as needed.

It Helps You Focus (On What’s Important)

Lastly, journaling can help you focus on what’s important to you, especially as you move through to a new stage of life.

This is particularly important at the start of a new year when we often set unrealistic goals that are based on what we think we should be doing rather than what we want to be doing, or what is important to us in our own life.

By focusing on what’s important to you, you can set goals that are in alignment with your values and that will make you happy.

60 Thoughtful New Year Journal Prompts

These journal prompts are designed to get you thinking about the past year, where you are now, as well as what you want to achieve in the future.

Take some time to sit down with a cup of coffee (or tea!) and answer one (or all) of these prompts.

You don’t have to answer them all, but we challenge you to push a little more to answer the questions that make you feel uncomfortable – this is often where the most growth happens.

Plus, you might be surprised at what you learn about yourself!

Here are your journal prompts for the new year:

Journal Prompts To Reflect On The Past Year

1 – What were your favorite memories from the previous year?

2 – What were your biggest challenges? What did you learn from them? 

3 – What is something you did in the past year that you’re incredibly proud of?

4 – What is something that surprised you from the past year?

5 – Describe the past year in one word. Why did you choose that word?

6 – What are some big lessons you learned over the past year?

7 – What goals did you achieve over the past year?

8 – What is something you implemented in the past year that really worked for you and that you will continue to do into the new year?

9 – What is something you let go of in the past year?

10 – What did you do for fun in the past year? What are some things you want to do for fun in the new year?

11 – What are some things you’d like to change or improve about yourself from this past year?

12 – What moment in the past year brought you absolute joy?

13 – What did you do for yourself in the last year that was purely for fun, joy, or curiosity?

14 – In what ways did you grow over the past year?

15 – What is something new you tried in the past year?

16 – Thinking back to the start of the last year, what do you know now that you wish you knew then?

17 – Looking back to yourself at the start of the last year, how did you feel then, versus how you feel now? What is different? What is better? What has changed?

18 – What changed about your relationships in the past year? What remained the same?

19 – How has your view of life changed since this time last year?

20 – What did you manifest or attract into your life over the past year?

21 – In what ways were you more authentic to yourself this year, versus last year?

22 – How did you take care of your physical health in the past year? In what ways do you want to improve in the new year?

23 – How did you take care of your mental health in the past year? In what ways do you want to improve in the new year?

24 – What did you do to move closer to your dreams and goals in the past year?

25 – What are some things you’re grateful for from this past year?

26 – What is a bad habit you’ve formed that you’d like to leave in the past year?

Journal Prompts To Set Goals For The New Year

27 – What are your goals for the coming year? How can you break them down into smaller, more actionable steps? 

28 – What do you need to do to achieve your goals? Who can help you along the way?  

29 – What are some things you need to let go of in order to achieve your goals?

30 – How can you make space for your goals in your life? What do you need to eliminate from your life in order to make room for growth?

31 – What is something you’ve been procrastinating on that you will commit to completing in the new year?

32 – What are new habits you’d like in the new year? (Bonus points for new healthy habits)

33 – What is a goal that you would like to set for yourself but that you don’t think is possible? How can you reframe it to make it more achievable?

34 – What are some positive affirmations or mantras you can say to yourself to help you achieve your goals?

35 – How can you stay motivated to achieve your goals? What are some things you can do to keep yourself on track?

36 – What are some potential obstacles that could get in the way of you achieving your goals? How can you overcome them?

37 – What are the consequences of not achieving your goals? What are the benefits of achieving your goals?

38 – How will you know when you’ve achieved your goal? What are some indicators that you’re on the right track?

39 – How will achieving your goal make you feel? What are some other benefits you’ll experience as a result of achieving your goal?

40 – What is your word of the year?

41 – Looking forward to the end of the year, how do you want your future self to feel?

42 – What can you do this year to push yourself out of your comfort zone?

43 – What areas of your life do you want to focus on this year?

44 – What is your one big main goal this year that you want to achieve above all else?

Journal Prompts To Focus On What’s Important In The New Year

45 – In what ways do you want to grow in the new year? What steps can you take to make that happen? 

46 – What do you need to let go of in order to be your best self? 

47 – Who do you want to become in the new year? What steps can you take to get there? 

48 – What do you want your life to look like in the new year? What changes do you need to make for that to that happen? 

49 – How can you simplify your life in the new year? What do you need to let go of? 

50 – How can you be more mindful in the new year? What practices do you want to incorporate into your daily routine

51 – How can you express more gratitude in the next year? What things are you thankful for? 

52 – How can you add more joy and happiness into your life in the new year? What steps can you take to make that happen? 

53 – What do you need to do to take care of yourself? How can you make self-care a priority in the new year? 

54 – Who are the people that matter most to you? Why are they important to you? 

55 – How can you make time for the things (and people) that matter most to you in the new year? 

56 – What do you want to let go of from this past year? What no longer serves you?  

57 – What are your values? What do you want to stand for in the new year? 

58 – How can you be more present in the new year? What distractions do you need to let go of? 

59 – How can you show up as your best self in the new year? What changes do you need to make? 

60 – How can you implement ways to focus on the present moment and enjoy where you are in your life right now? 

Final Thoughts

The new year is such a wonderful time to journal. There’s just something so cleansing about this time, and it’s filled with possibilities and meaningful change.

Use this time to really reflect on the year you’ve had, and spend time thinking about what you really want to achieve in the next year, as well as what is actually important to you.

And finally, don’t forget to be gentle with yourself.

The new year is a time for fresh starts, so don’t beat yourself up if you didn’t achieve everything you wanted to in the past year.

Take what you’ve learned and use it to make this next year even better.

The new year is a time for reflection, goal setting, and focus. Journaling is the perfect way to do all three. By taking the time to reflect on your past year, set goals for the new year, and focus on what’s important to you, you can start the new year off on the right foot. These new year journal prompts can help you challenge your thought process and have a deeper sense of awareness of yourself.
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