The last few years have been a little more challenging than usual. With the need to social distance, limit gatherings, and make necessary changes to that everyday routine…things have been different, to say the least. However, there is still a lot to learn, even in times of uncertainty and doubt. 2020 was a year like no other and 2021 had its own unique challenges. Now that a new year is on the horizon, it is especially important to take time to process, reflect, and move forward with a positive mental attitude. Need a little assistance? Make good use of these journal prompts and goal setting tips to make sure you have an unforgettable 2022.
The Importance of Journaling and Journal Prompts to Reflect on 2021
Did you ever keep a diary or a journal when you were a child? There was something liberating about being able to put pen to paper and write anything that popped into your head. The good, the bad, the ugly…and maybe even the silly. That sense of wonder can still be achieved in adulthood. Perhaps it is time to close out the year with a little journaling. There are many benefits associated with this practice. Not only does it increase mindfulness and connection, but it also improves your communication skills, allows you to process complex emotions, and can even reduce feelings of stress and anxiety. Yes, journaling is a wonderful way to process difficult situations, which is why it is an absolute must for the tail-end of 2021.
Chances are, you are now feeling inspired to write. Grab a notebook and a pen and use these journal prompts to reflect on 2021…
- What was your favourite experience in 2021? Who was with you? Write down everything you can remember: what you wore, the weather and how you felt. Commit that positive experience to memory and enjoy reminiscing.
- What was your biggest challenge in 2021? How did you overcome that challenge? Focus on the strengths that you showed during that time (such as finding happiness in the midst of a struggle or being strong enough to lean on a loved one) and think about how you can apply those strengths to situations that arise in 2022.
- How did you prioritize self-care during the year? Write a list of all the ways you treated yourself throughout 2021. Some examples include: taking a bubble bath once a week, making time to exercise regularly, eating better, or tackling creative projects. Once you are finished, use your list to determine some must-have self-care activities for 2022.
Even More Journal Prompts for 2021
Still looking for more ways to reflect on the year? Not to worry…there are even more journal prompts to help you look back as you prepare to move ahead.
- What were you most grateful for in 2021? Make a list of three bigger things (a place to live, food to eat, good health) and three smaller things (an important book, an interesting documentary, hearing from an old friend). It is important as you look back at the year that you take a moment to remember how blessed you are!
- Did you write any New Years Resolutions in 2021? How many of those resolutions were you able to accomplish? What helped you to be successful? Where there any areas for improvement? Take what you have learned and apply that to your goals for 2022.
- Choose one word to describe 2021. Really take a moment to think about why that word represents the year and how you can bring that energy into the new year.
Start the New Year Right with Goal Setting Tips for 2022
Now that you have taken a look back…it is time to look forward. A new year is always a wonderful time to reassess and think about what you want to accomplish over the next twelve months. There may be some work-related goals, some personal goals, travel goals, or even financial goals. In order to make sure you achieve everything you want to in 2022, it is important to consider certain tips and tricks. Here are some suggestions to keep in mind:
- Choose goals that are specific and attainable. For instance, if you want to be healthier in 2022, don’t just say: be healthier. Actually take time to think about how you will be healthier. Does that mean working out four times a week? Cutting back on baked goods? Trying out different fruits and vegetables? Be specific and make sure that whatever goal you set is actually something attainable. After all, you want to set goals that you will be able to achieve. Slow and steady wins the race, so don’t be afraid to start small when it comes to goal setting.
- Be open about your goals. Sometimes, it seems easier to keep your goals to yourself. If no one knows that you are trying to write a novel, no one will be able to hold you accountable if you fail to meet your weekly word count goal. That is the reason that communication is key! You are more likely to follow through when you know there is someone out there that will ask you about your progress.
- Use visualization to break through mental barriers. Are you struggling to believe that you will actually be able to accomplish the goals you are setting? Sometimes it takes a little creativity to push past those limiting beliefs. Visualize yourself achieving your goal – and visualize this on a regular basis. That will make the goal seem more attainable to you and as a result, you will be more likely to achieve it.
Say So Long to 2021 and Welcome in a Wonderful New Year
It may be tempting to skip past the hard stuff and dive headfirst into a new year. However, taking time to reflect on the last twelve months will make it easier to process what happened and refocus your mind. Additionally, taking time to prioritize what you want to achieve in 2022 will allow you to better plan your days and start the year off with a renewed sense of purpose.