Tag Archives: anxiety

20 Journal Prompts for Anxiety and Depression

journal prompts for anxiety and depression*Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. Miss Bean and I thank you for it! 

By now, you probably know how much I love to use my bullet journal. It has been a wonderful help in keeping me

It keeps me focused, and helps to give me perspective when I started feeling anxious, or I hit a bit of a sad patch in my life.

Writing has also been a sort of therapy for me when it comes to my anxiety and depression. If I take some time to slow down and spend a little time writing out my thoughts, my mood really improves.

I have decided to create a special section in my bujo binder and want to use some journal prompts to help me to work through those moments when my brain starts acting up.

So, I came up with a list of 20 journal prompts for anxiety and depression. Some are lists that I will be able to refer to when I need some extra help finding the positive. Others are writing exercises to help reframe the negative thinking and to help find a more happy perspective.


 

20 JOURNAL PROMPTS FOR ANXIETY AND DEPRESSION

  • List 20 things that make you smile.
  • Write about what you love about life.
  • When things seem tough, I want to remember _________
  • What is something that you have overcome?
  • Write about some of the kindest things that you can do for yourself when you are in pain (physical and/or emotional).
  • Write about your victories this week.
  • What do you think your life would be like if you didn’t have anxiety or depression?
  • What positive changes have you made or experienced in the past year?
  • Write the words that you need to hear.
  • What does your best day look like?
  • What would you like to be remembered for?
  • Write about one thing that you look forward to every day.
  • Build a list of 15 songs that can help change your mood.
  • Write about five of your best talents.
  • List three things that you would do if you weren’t afraid.
  • What are five things that help you feel better when things are difficult?
  • Write about ten things that you are thankful for.
  • What is your favorite memory?
  • Choose one thing that triggers anxiety or depression, and then write about a few ways that you can combat this trigger.
  • Write about something that you forgive yourself for.

If you feel these prompts might be helpful to you and want to join in on the writing, here is a printable list of these prompts, so that you can keep it handy in your own journals.

journal prompts for anxiety and depression

xo, Melissa

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The Gratitude List: A Secret Weapon to Finding Your Happy In Life

gratitude list *Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. Miss Bean and I thank you for it! 🙂

Negative thinking.

It is one of the biggest contributors to my anxiety and depression.

Those negative thoughts start flowing, and, before I know it, I find myself feeling really down.

Recently, I noticed that I was becoming too focused on the negativity in my life and that it was harder to find the good in my everyday life.

I was falling into that all too familiar depression cycle, and I really did not want to be there.

Things started to pile up and get overwhelming, and I couldn’t keep up with everything.

Activities that were once important to me, like blog posts, and craft projects, were neglected.

I started to beat myself up for falling into a rut again, and for letting things go. In my mind, nothing that I did was enough. Here I was again, failing to keep up. Might as well quit.

HOWEVER

I still managed to do one thing.


I continued to keep up with my bullet journal, which has been an amazing tool to help fight my anxiety and depression.


But there was one area in my journal that I had started to ignore.

The daily sentences about my day. which were usually just a list of a few good things that had happened.

I decided to start doing this list when a friend gifted me a book called The Noticer.

It is a wonderful story that helps to show how important a simple change in perspective and that finding the good in any situation can really change things.

If you haven’t read it, I would highly recommend picking up a copy.

Anyway, my discovery made me realize that I should focus a bit more on one of my bullet journal pages again; the gratitude list.

When I stopped taking the time to write those things out, I did not notice the good stuff, which made me a much more negative person.

What exactly is a gratitude list?


It’s simply a list of the different things that you are feeling thankful for. The goal is to write down two or three things each day that you are grateful for.


Right now my favorite method is to do my gratitude list in the space that I created on my daily bullet journal pages.

Since my boxes are so big for each day, I have enough space at the bottom to write down the happy things.

gratitude list

However, if the thought of writing something out every day seems overwhelming, start smaller.

It can be a weekly or monthly list.

gratitude list

Or, make a monthly drawing and write down the good things that happen, like I did with this sun.

gratitude list

Just find what works for you and go with it!

Taking time out of my day to just write a couple of sentences has helped me feel more present and happier!

As I have experienced over the past two months, it can be so easy to fall into the habit of negative thinking.

By keeping this list, it helps to find that much needed silver lining and provides a balance that helps even out negative energy with positive vibes.

Give it a try and let me know how it works for you!

xo,

Melissa

P.S. Are you new here? Follow Disco Bumblebee on Pinterest and be sure to join my Facebook group for more journaling ideas, quick and easy crafts, and other lifestyle tips.

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Motivation Lost? 5 Steps You Can Take To Get It Back!

motivation

The months of May and June 2017 will now be known as the time that I lost my motivation.

It all started when our family kicked off  the summer with a vacation. It was a lovely time. I took a break from technology, and read books instead. We explored a cave, had fun on a boat, and laughed with family. motivation

I had every intention of working on a blog post, once I returned. After all, I had just experienced a relaxing week in a beautiful cabin. I was refreshed and could look at the world with a clear head.

But I did not get any writing done.

I kept telling myself that I SHOULD work, but I could do it tomorrow.

Even my beloved bullet journal suffered, it’s pages were lonely. I didn’t doodle, I didn’t track the weather or my mood, and worst of all, I had nothing to check off.motivation

Then, I realized something.

My journal is a huge KEY in keeping me motivated and organized.

When I stopped writing my tasks in my journal, and checking it daily, it gave me a reason to procrastinate. I also felt myself become more anxious and overwhelmed.

I had no plan to follow, so instead my brain just had a running list of things that I needed to do. Without putting it on paper, I quickly went into overload, and fell into my old pattern of just shutting down and doing nothing instead. The motivation was gone.


SO WHAT CAN YOU DO WHEN YOU NEED TO GET YOUR MOTIVATION BACK?


  1. GIVE YOURSELF PERMISSION FOR A BREAK

First of all, it is okay to take a break.

I think that in a way, my body and mind were telling me I needed to allow myself some time to do nothing. To read those books that have been piled on my nightstand, catch up on the magazines, and even take a few naps.

Of course, my first instinct was to beat myself up for being lazy and not accomplishing anything.

Instead, I changed my perspective. I gave myself permission to have that break. No writing or work was done, but I did get to enjoy some extra time with my family. I even did some crafts and tried some recipes. And did I mention the naps?!motivation

I was just productive in a different way.

And that is okay.

2. REVISIT YOUR GOALS

However, it is important not to stay in permanent break mode. The longer you remain in it, the harder it becomes to snap out of it.

I needed to take a look at my goals and remember why I was doing all that work in the first place.

When I was checking my bullet journal daily, I was reminded of what I was working for. When I stopped doing that, it became easier to ignore the steps that I wanted to take to accomplish my goals.

If you don’t already have a list of goals, with a plan of action, take some time to write some out. Or make a vision board. Or start a bullet journal.

Even if you are feeling unmotivated, just the simple act of looking at your goals each day will help remind and inspire you to keep working.

3. START SMALL

Part of the reason that I stopped being motivated,  was that I felt like things were piling up around me. Each day my mental lists grew longer, yet I wasn’t doing anything about it. I didn’t feel like it would be possible to get everything done, so instead,  I just shut down.

To combat this, pick just one thing and DO IT.

For me, I told myself that I needed to get out my journal each day and look at and start using my tracker again.

By doing my basic daily tasks again, I started feeling productive and like I was re-building my self discipline again.motivation

Still missing a lot of x’s, but let me tell you, checking off those boxes again when I completed something felt so good!

It doesn’t matter what you choose to do, just pick one small thing and work it into a routine again. Don’t get overwhelmed trying to juggle too many things, or all of the things that you were doing before you lost your groove.

Baby steps!!

When you are feeling ready, add another task. For me, I will start doing my affirmations again. I need that positive reinforcement. 🙂

4. REWARD YOURSELF AND CREATE AN INSPIRED SPACE

This one is easy.

Make sure you create a fun space to help you feel inspired, and give yourself a little reward. Treat yourself to new journal supplies, find some inspirational quotes, clean your work area or re-arrange it, get a cute plant. Little rewards like this are good for motivation.motivation

Just have a little corner or space where you can plan, work, clear your head, or meditate to help keep you on track.

5. DON’T FOCUS ON FAILURES

Finally, be nice to yourself.

Don’t focus on what you did wrong, or what you didn’t accomplish. Negativity can kill motivation. As I mentioned earlier, a perspective change can do wonders.

I’m going to be honest, I still have my dark moments and there are days that I just want to remain in my blanket cave and ignore everything. Just getting out of bed is a simple victory, and it counts as a success.motivation

Think of and remember the successes that you experienced. Even if they are small. Write them down so that you can revisit them when you feel unmotivated.

I followed these 5 steps and was able to find my motivation and get to working and writing again.

It feels good to be back.

What do you do when you find yourself in a funk and need to find your groove again? I would love to hear about it in the comments.

xo,

Melissa

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7 Self Care Pages For Your Bullet Journal

 

self care pages

*Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. Miss Bean and I thank you for it! 🙂

Self-care is an important part of life but can be hard to find the time to fit it in.

A few months ago I wrote about a few simple ways to sneak self-care into your routine. This month,

I will show you how you can use your bullet journal as a tool to help you with your self-care.

Self-care is all about being in tune with your own personal physical and emotional needs.

It is about nurturing your mind, body, and soul.

It is something that should be done regularly, so it makes it a great thing to incorporate into your bullet journal pages.

Here are seven different self-care pages that you can make that will help keep you on track with taking care of yourself.


JOURNAL OR BRAIN DUMP PAGE

Keeping a journal is one tool that you can use to take care of yourself.

Simply taking the time to write about how you feel is important. It will help you clear your mind, and discover the things that are bothering you, or better yet, inspiring you.

If you have the time, try to set aside a time in the morning or evening to write a few pages.

Just start writing your train of thought, working to empty out everything that is on your mind.

You might be thinking that you do not have a big chunk of time to spend writing.

I totally get that, and I have a solution for you.

The brain dump page. 

I covered this wonderful page in my post about how bullet journals can help with depression and anxiety.

The brain dump page is a good quick substitute for writing a few journal pages.

You may not have the time to pour your heart out into a journal.

Instead, try pouring a cup of coffee and jotting down a few words or sentences about what is on your mind.

It will help you approach the day with a clear mind.

self care pages

Plus, participating in that little morning routine counts as self-care!

GRATITUDE PAGE

This is another page that you can add to your journal that will help you keep a good perspective.

It is easy to get overwhelmed with all that is going wrong or bad in your life.

Eventually, if that is what you focus on, nothing seems to go right!

Keep a page in your bullet journal where you write the good things that happen to you.

It doesn’t matter how big or how small, just try to find ONE thing that you can be grateful for.

Maybe it is a compliment from a friend or a nice text message you received.

It could even be that the sun decided to shine.

self care pages

Refer back to it often, and remember those good things that happened. They are good for the soul.

SELF CARE PAGE

This is an easy one. It serves as a good reminder to take time to care for you.

Make yourself a reference page in your bullet journal where you list ideas for self-care activities.

self care pages

Since you will always have it handy, try to refer to that page each week and pick something that you can do to show yourself a little love.

DOODLE PAGE

I like to doodle. I find it calming and relaxing, and it definitely counts as self-care.

Make a page in your journal to doodle, or sketch.

Breathe slowly while you color, and be mindful as you make your lines.

self care pages

The result will be a page full of doodles that make you happy and might cheer you up on a day that you feel down.

REALITY CHECK PAGE

This page is a good way to help put the negative thoughts that run through your mind into perspective.

There are times in my day where my brain starts freaking me out and I perceive things in a way that are not true.

When this happens, I use this page.

There is one column to write my fear or the irrational thought that I am having.

Then, there is another column to replace it with a more positive thought and perspective.

self care pages

Using this page is similar to the gratitude page, as it helps to refocus negative thinking into something more positive.

AFFIRMATIONS PAGE

Fill a page with positive thoughts and affirmations about yourself, or about life.

self care pages

Start out slowly if you need to, but set aside a time at least once each month to light a candle, put on some good music and say these affirmations out loud.

Ideally, working towards saying them at least once a week, and then every day, would be best.

YOGA POSES PAGE

One of my goals this year was to work on fitting yoga into my self-care routine.

I know by doing this it helps me stay relaxed, and it is another good way to clear the mind.

However, I don’t typically have a ton of time to watch an entire video or attend a yoga class.

I remedied this by making my own little page illustrating a mini yoga routine for myself.

self care pages

Now it is always handy in my bullet journal, and I see it often, so it reminds me to take a few minutes and stretch it out.

I hope that some of these self-care pages might help you find a way to making self-care a priority in your life.

Remember, these are only examples. It doesn’t have to be perfect.

It doesn’t have to be perfect. You WILL make mistakes. If you don’t like to draw and prefer lists, just make lists.

The main point of a bullet journal is to have a system that you can customize for yourself. 

If I happened to inspire you and you would like to share, I would love to see it. Or if you have favorite self-care pages that you like to use,  please share them in the comments!

Check back in soon,  or better yet, sign up for my mailing list, because I will be sharing about how my use of a mood tracker is working out, and I will be sharing more information about how to use trackers in your bullet journal.

xo, Melissa

P.S. Are you new here? Follow Disco Bumblebee on Pinterest and be sure to join my Facebook group for more journaling ideas, quick and easy crafts, and other lifestyle tips.

 

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How Using A Bullet Journal Can Help With Anxiety and Depression

 

anxietyanddepression

*Disclaimer: This post may contain some affiliate links. That means I might receive a small commission if you make a purchase by using my link. This happens at no additional cost to you, and it helps provide a few supplies for our homeschool classroom. Miss Bean and I thank you for it! 🙂

Anxiety and depression are something that I often deal with.

Last year, I started a bullet journal in hopes that it would help me ease my busy mind. I am happy to report that I have noticed a huge improvement.

While I still have my moments, I now know that I now have a good tool to help me cope and work through things when I start feeling overwhelmed.

I want to show you that creating a routine with your bullet journal can help you deal with anxiety and depression. It will help you feel more stable and give you a more positive outlook.


Not sure what a bullet journal is? Check out my beginners guide to bullet journals


Here are some ways to put your bullet journal to work for you and your mental health.

BRAIN DUMP PAGE

This is one of my favorite pages to create.

Each morning, as I am drinking my coffee, I take some time to breathe and think about what is on my mind. Things that are bothering me, things that make me happy, and things that I want to do.

I create little mind maps with all of these things that accumulate in my head, and once I do that, my mind feels a little more at peace.

self care pages

It doesn’t have to look pretty, and it can be in any form, just find what works best for you.

The goal is to quiet your mind.

TO-DO LISTS

I usually have a brain full of things that I want to do and need to accomplish. It can get a little cluttered, so being able to have a running list written out, helps me clear my head a bit and have a visual of what I want to do.

However, those lists can also get long and become overwhelming, which leads to shutting down.

One solution would be to make short to-do lists for each day, or for the week.

Choose two or three main things that you would like to accomplish, and start with that.

Use your brain dump page to jot down other things on your mind. Then, when you sit down to work on your goals for the day, pull items from that page to add to your list.

anxiety and depression

Another suggestion would be to create a DONE list, instead of a to-do list.

Write down thing things that you did accomplish.

This can help turn a negative thing, such as a long overwhelming list, into a positive thing.


However you create your lists, just make sure it is achievable. Do not set yourself up for failure.


GRATITUDE LISTS

Sometimes, when anxiety and depression strike, it can make everything feel so hopeless. Like there is nothing good happening.

Take some time each day to think about and write down 1-3 good things that happened in your day.

Even if it is just something like just getting out of bed, or that the sun came out for a few hours. I found once I practiced this, that over time, the good things became easier to think of.

Here is a peek at my current gratitude list page for my journal.
self care pages

Need a little more inspiration?  I explain a little bit more here, how keeping a gratitude list can help focus on the positive and put things into perspective.

SELF CARE PAGE

Make a page that lists various activities that you can do to take a few minutes to focus on yourself.

When you start feeling overwhelmed and need a break, refer to your list.

Often, when I start feeling really upset, my brain doesn’t seem able to think of what I can do to help get out of that rut. If you have a list, it makes it easy to just pick something and go with it.

anxiety and depression

If you need some ideas to get you started, check out my post about quick self-care ideas.

HABIT TRACKERS

These have everything that you need to do on a daily basis available at a glance. Use grid paper and track things like exercise, food, medicine, housework, or vitamins.

A good one to start with is water intake, as staying hydrated is important for the mood.

Trackers are handy because they can help put things into perspective for you.

You might discover that you need to work harder to make something more of a habit, or better yet, you may realize that you are doing a great job and that things aren’t as bad as you think!

Again, just remember to set realistic goals for the things that you want to track.

MOOD TRACKERS

I wrote a little bit about starting to track my mood last week.

Even though this is a tracker as well, I feel like it deserves its own category. This one is helpful to see if there are certain times which you are prone to feeling depressed or anxious, it gives you the big picture of how you are feeling.

I have enjoyed tracking my moods so far. When I grab my colors to fill in my box for the day, it gives me a moment to think about and recap my day.

Often I think I had a bad day, but once I think about it, I realize that it is usually a mix and that something positive typically happens. (of course, I try and remember to add that to my gratitude page!)

anxiety and depression

At first, I was worried that all my squares would be gray for sad, or dark blue for anxious, but I discovered that wasn’t the case.

QUOTE OR MANTRA PAGE

Finally, I like keeping a page with inspirational or motivational quotes that I like. I can glance at them when I start feeling dark, and usually, there is some kind of quote that will help uplift me.

It doesn’t need to be fancy, I just keep a page in my notebook so that I can just write it down when I find a quote that I like.

anxiety and depression

Mantras or affirmations are also nice to add, work them into your morning routine and start the day right. Remind yourself that you are a strong, capable, and smart person.

self care pages

I hope that this shows you that organizing and creating a system in your bullet journal can be therapeutic and can help when emotions start feeling out of control.


Do you have a favorite page that you use to help combat anxiety and depression? I would love for you to share it in the comments. I am always trying to find inspiration for new pages to add to my journal.

xo Melissa

P.S. Are you new here? Follow Disco Bumblebee on Pinterest and be sure to join my Facebook group for more journaling ideas, quick and easy crafts, and other lifestyle tips. 

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A Good Dance Party Can Solve Anything.

A good dance party can solve anything. This is what I was reminded of today.

There are times when even the best plans can fall apart. Even though I felt I was organized, all those lists in my journal were no match for this past week. As I was having my morning coffee, and preparing for the day, I started being quite tough on myself. I am behind in my blog posts. I did not try the recipes I wanted to test. Then there were the super hot temperatures, and several days of rain that stopped us from being able to take our nature hike field trip. I keep telling myself that I need to get moving and do some yoga. My body hurts, and I’m sure it would help.

As all those negative thoughts accumulated, I began to feel that all too familiar anxiety attack coming on. The combination of another night of insomnia, and the running list of failures in my head, made me feel super overwhelmed.

Defeated.

I wanted to crawl into bed and wrap myself up in a blanket cave.

At that moment, Miss Bean came up to me. She snuggled up next to me and asked if we could have a dance party before we started school.

We picked out our music, turned it up, and started dancing. We laughed, and jumped. Twirled and swayed. We made silly poses and faces.

Suddenly, I started feeling better.

Once we finished, Bean began to gather her school supplies, and pick out the books she wanted to read. I took some deep breaths and began to make a list of all the things that I DID accomplish.

And do you know what?

I found that things weren’t as bad as I had originally felt.

I realized that we actually had a good week in school. Our Beanstalk experiment, did not work the first time. Instead of quitting, we tried to solve the mystery of what went wrong. We determined that we made the cotton balls too wet, and started over. This morning, we discovered that our seed is beginning to sprout!

Also, we did our cabbage leaf experiment to illustrate how plants drink water.

dance party

Seeing the leaves soak up the water and change colors was awesome! Even the teenager was excited to see the results.

dance party

dance party

As for our nature walk, and outdoor portion of our plant unit? We have been having so much fun with it, we will just extend our work over the next week. Another reason that homeschooling is such a great fit for us. The flexibility is a wonderful thing. The weather is officially cooling off, and we are very ready to take a hike. I made a fun scavenger hunt page to take with us. Miss Bean is hoping that we don’t see a snake, she is okay with leaving that box unchecked.

Because of all the rain, I wasn’t needed at work on Sunday. Which gave me an entire day all to myself. Time like that is a rarity for me. With the gloomy skies, it was tempting to stay in bed and binge on Netflix all day. Instead, I got out my supplies, and made some peg people. I was especially pleased with how my peg bat family turned out.

dance party

I even took my productiveness a step further, and got my etsy shop back up and running! Head over and give it a little love.

It is amazing what a little me time can do for the mind and mood!

I may not have gotten much accomplished with menu planning or food testing this past week. But today, I got out the crock pot, and put on some more music. Bean and I had another dance party as we assembled the ingredients for Crock Pot Beef and Broccoli. It is already smelling delicious!

Why did I write this blog entry? Today I may not have detailed lesson or menu plans. I don’t have a crafty project or tutorial to share. I did however, receive a valuable reminder from my wise daughter.

Sometimes, you need to stop being negative or sad, turn up the music, and just dance. It is the perfect way to re-focus and realize that things are not so bad. A good dance party can get you back on track!

 

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