Oprah Winfrey once said, “I was once afraid of people saying, ‘Who does she think she is?’ Now I have the courage to stand up and say “This is who I am”. The question is WHO ARE YOU? Providing answers to this question is very important in life because if we are not careful, we could lose our true identity to situations and events around us or to what people think we are or want us to become. Journal prompts for self discovery can help you to get to know yourself better and prevent this from happening.
When we lose our identity or fail to get a hold of who we really are, we are less likely to live a fulfilled life and we’ll be more likely to be at conflict within our inner being, give in to social pressure a.k.a following the crowd, be poor in decision-making and ultimately make a mess of our life. Okay…enough of the gory imagery yeah?
But the question still stands, WHO ARE YOU?
Journal Prompts For Self Discovery
To answer the ultimate question of self discovery, all you have to do is create a quiet time and space (away from all forms of distraction), get a pen and book, and ask questions about yourself and note down the answers.
Don’t be scared to know who you are. It’s good to bear in mind that you are human and you’re allowed some flaws and mistakes, you can only strive to be a better person. So worry less about imperfect answers, this isn’t a fairy tale or Disney story line. Just let the words flow without stopping and without judgement.
The content of your journal is for your eyes alone, so you don’t have to worry about how people will feel or what they will say about you when they see it.
Don’t forget, “It takes courage to endure the sharp pains of self-discovery rather than choose to take the dull pain of unconsciousness that would last the rest of our lives”.
The following are 35 journal prompts I’ve put together that would serve as a guide through your journey of self discovery.
- Write down a description of how your ideal day would look like.
- What are the 5 major decisions you’ve taken in the last 5 years and how have they shaped your life?
- Write out 10 things that make you happy.
- Write out your strengths and abilities. How do you leverage on them?
- Note down your fears, phobias, limitations and obstacles. Take note of how they’ve hindered you in the past and write down how you want to overcome them.
- What are the challenges you have faced in the last 10 years? How were you able overcome them?
- Write down what your ideal type of life is like. Are there any similarities or differences between that and your present life? Note them.
- Write down 5 risks you would like to take. Take note of their implications and benefits.
- How often do you take risks? Note down the 5 major risks you have taken, and their implications.
- List out 10 major things you have done in the past 5 years that you’re most proud of.
- Write out the impact you have made among your friends and in your locality. Write down the impacts you’d like to make in 10 years.
- What are the things you’ve done that you won’t like to talk about? Do you still feel guilty about those things?
- Write down how you have helped someone in their time of need these past weeks and how you feel about it.
- Write out your most toxic trait. Jot down how you’ve been able to manage it. Take note of it’s effects on you and others and write down how you want to do away with them.
- If you’re given the chance to go back in time, what 5 things would you like to change 5 years earlier?
- What are your desires? Are they in line with your short and long-term goals?
- What important lessons have you learnt in the past 5 years? How did they shape your perspective about life?
- What makes up your comfort zone? How often do you get out of your comfort zone?
- Take note of who your greatest source of motivation comes from and why. Also, ask questions about what gets you on the edge, what’s your greatest drive?
- Do you feel a sense of responsibility/belonging towards some things or someone? If yes, kindly take note of their names and why you feel such towards them.
- What do you think about yourself? How do you see yourself right now? Write down your perspective about life and how it shaped your thought processes. What advice would you give to yourself right now?
- Where do you see yourself in the next 5-10 years? Is that vision realistic?
- Write down your short-term and long-term goals and how you want to achieve them. How well are you following the plans you laid out for your goals to be achieved?
- What are your hobbies? Describe 5 things you like doing most and why you like doing them.
- What skill(s) are you good at? How have you been utilizing this skill to make things better for yourself?
- Make a list of the things you’re grateful for and why you appreciate them.
- Write down how you handled past pain and discomfort and how you’d handle them now.
- Who/what means the most to you and why? List out the names of the people you can count on and write a short note on how they have been there for you.
- Write out 10 words of affirmation to yourself.
- What do you love about life in general?
- Take a moment and write about someone or a moment you will always treasure.
- Write down how you felt and what you did when people let you down and how you will handle disappointment from people now.
- Write a short note about a day you’ll never forget. What is the significance of that day to who you are now?
- Take note of the things you usually anticipate. This may include days and special events you look forward to, what food you’d like to try out, places you’d love to visit, people you’d love to meet and things you’d like to learn.
- Write down your biggest goal in life as well as your reasons for wanting to achieve it. What is holding you back? What are you afraid of in pursuing that goal?
Remember, self discovery helps us to understand our weakness and inabilities and how we can overcome them. It helps us identify our capabilities, our strengths, and how we can foster them and use them to our advantage. It’s a lifetime necessity, don’t lose sight of this fact.
Whether you are doing this for the first time or you’ve done this before, understand that knowing and expressing who you are will make you happier.
Having a mind of your own will make social pressure less effective on you, and knowing what’s best for you will assist you in making the right decisions. Self discovery helps us understand and tolerate others and also instill self-discipline in ourselves.
Also, note that this is not a once-and-for-all thing. As the years go by, we tend to get distracted by a lot of activities, forgetting who we are. Therefore, it is important and advisable you do this once in a while. It will not only give you a sense of direction, but it will also serve as a reminder of who you are.
Below are some quotes you can think upon during your quiet time. Always remember, be you!
“Knowing yourself is the beginning of all wisdom.” – Aristotle
“When you know yourself you are empowered. When you accept yourself you are invincible.” – Tina Lifford
“The best way to find yourself is to lose yourself in the service of others.” – Gandhi
“Your work is to discover your work and then with all your heart give yourself to it.” – Buddha
“Discovering who you are today is the first step to being who you will be tomorrow.” -Destiny’s Odyssey
“Find out who you are and do it on purpose.” – Dolly Parton
“You find peace not by rearranging the circumstances of your life, but by realising who you are at the deepest level.” – Eckhart Tolle
“You have no need to travel anywhere. Journey within yourself, enter a mine of rubies and bathe in the splendour of your own light.” – Rumi
“The greatest discovery in life is self-discovery. Until you find yourself you will always be someone else. Become yourself.” – Myles Munroe
“Know thyself.” – Socrates
Also check out these posts:
- 30 Easy Ways To Improve Yourself Little By Little Every Day
- 20 Deep Self-Reflection Questions To Ask Yourself
- Top 10 Morning Habits To Supercharge Your Day With Positivity
- 15 Bad Habits To Break This Year If You Want A Happy Life
Don’t forget to pin these journal prompts for self discovery!
If these journal prompts for self discovery are useful to you, remember to pin it to your personal development board on Pinterest so you can come back to it later!