Get Realigned for Fall—52 Journal Prompts for a Fresh Start

Despite my best efforts, summer is the season when my journal tends to collect more dust than memories. Just this morning, I jotted down a quick recap out of some invisible obligation (“ate lots of watermelons, swam in lots of pools, read lots of YA books“) so that I could get on with the good stuff. Fall is approaching and suddenly, my journal beckons. Its crisp, blank pages primed and ready for all my brilliant thoughts… but, full disclosure? This is coming from a woman who literally just typed “smart” into only to choose the similarly uninspired, “brilliant” for the previous sentence.

It would appear my brain could benefit from something of a jumpstart.

No matter how you approach your journaling practice this season, whether you’re new to journaling, a die-hard everyday-er, or like me, just dipping back in after a long stretch, journal prompts are the kindest entry to writing. Personally, I find that September is the perfect month to realign with morning and evening routines that most likely took a more relaxed approach in the summer.

Featured image from our interview with Megan Roup by Michelle Nash.

Image by Michelle Nash

52 September Journal Prompts for Everything You Need

I like to gently invite longer stretches of writing into my day and pay attention to the transition happening both around and within me. Journal prompts are helpful any time of year, but these are particularly directed toward September—when the days grow shorter, our attention begs to turn inward, and we realize that an ending (and with that, a new beginning), is in sight.

For Checking In

  • How do you feel—really?
  • What do you want—really?
  • What’s been a big win for you so far this year?
  • What matters most to you this season?
  • What are you learning about yourself?
  • What do you know for sure?
  • What are you wondering about?
  • What is here to stay?
  • What will pass?

For Self-Care

  • When you feel pain or sadness, what makes you feel grounded?
  • Are you forcing yourself to maintain any relationships?
  • What are the energy givers in your life?
  • What are the energy takers in your life?
  • Where can you better pay attention?
  • What is one thing you can remove from your plate this season?
  • What does your body need today?
  • What does your soul need today?
  • What three things are contributing to your peace right now?
  • What does your ideal weekend look like this season?
  • What fall rituals did you always look forward to? What new fall rituals can you create this year?

For Self-Compassion

  • What are you good at?
  • What makes you unique?
  • Challenge yourself to write a whole page dedicated to compliments about yourself.
  • What are you learning to let go of?
  • What are some ways you can show compassion toward yourself?
  • What words of encouragement do you most need to hear today?
  • Reflect on when you met your best friend. What about them immediately drew you in? Now brainstorm the qualities about yourself that drew you to them.
  • Write about the ways your presence alone makes others feel happy, seen, and supported.
  • Write about a time when you felt truly yourself.

For Growth

  • Make a list of the things making your life easier right now.
  • How can you let a past lesson guide your future?
  • What is one problem you can release?
  • What intentions do you want to set for the months ahead?
  • What are some ways you can master your actions? Emotions? Mindset?
  • Think 10 years in the past and 10 years in the future. What would you tell your younger self? What hopes would you share with your older self?
  • Make a list of your values. How are you living in and out of alignment with these values?
  • Define what success looks like for yourself.
  • Write about a difficult time in your life. How did you get through it?

For Inspiration

  • What is your mantra in this season?
  • What are 10 things making you happy right now?
  • What makes you feel most like yourself?
  • What have you been listening to lately?
  • Write about a place where you feel most inspired. Describe how you feel emotionally and physically when you’re there and reflect on how the scenery engages your senses.
  • What is the next thing you want to learn?
  • What’s the best advice you’ve ever received?
  • What two things can you do this week to experience expansion in your life?

For Creative Energy

  • What activities or hobbies help you experience creative flow?
  • What were your favorite things to do as a child?
  • What does your dream home look like?
  • How did you discover your love for what you do? Be it professionally, creatively, or in your free time?
  • What does art mean to you?
  • What does beauty mean to you?

This post was originally published on September 2, 2022, and has since been updated.