The 8 Best Mindfulness Journals — & You Can Start Any Time Of Year

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Mindfulness is a big buzzword these days, and while it may sound intimidating or complicated, being mindful can simply mean being aware of yourself and others. That helps explain why journaling is such a popular mindfulness technique, and the best mindfulness journals will be easy to incorporate into your routine and fit your personal journaling style. Before purchasing, consider whether you prefer a more or less structured approach, and the time period you’d like to work with — though none of these are dated with specific years, so you can start them whenever’s convenient for you.

When it comes to structure, if you tend to have difficulty beginning to write or if your mind tends to wander, you may want to consider one of the more structured journals available, which feature prompts and exercises to help you along. Inversely, if you can feel boxed-in by prompts, you may prefer to structure your own blank journal or opt for a journal that offers daily blank spaces.

You should also consider how often you plan to journal and for how long a time period. For those who want a journal that encourages them to write more often, there are mindfulness journals that have prompts or room for entries according to the day, week, or season. More interested in journaling for a set period of time? Consider a shorter 90-day journal. Alternatively, if you have a hard time sticking to a strict journaling schedule, you might try a more free-form version that doesn’t require daily practice so you can dip in and out at any time.

For many folks, practicing mindfulness can increase gratitude, mitigate stress, and help them to feel more present in their everyday lives. And whichever style you choose, I hope these unique journals help you to feel more present, cultivate gratitude, and help guide you on your mindfulness journey.

1. This Daily Journal With Weekly Mindfulness Topics

For a structured approach to mindfulness journaling, this 431-page journal with daily prompts will keep you writing for a whole year. However, because it’s undated, you can start at any point during the year. Plus, it’s formatted around 52 weeklong topics which allow you to dive deep into one subject at a time for seven whole days each. (As an example, the first week is all about “Daily Gratitude.”) Reviewers have noted that they appreciate the amount of room the lined pages allow for their daily journaling, enough so that they can even doodle if inspired.

One reviewer wrote: “Really helps me to sit down for even just a few minutes and try to practice mindfulness! I really like the idea of the prompts because I wouldn’t know what to right on my own! Definitely worth it.”

2. An Editor-Approved 90-Day Gratitude Check-In Journal

This 90-day journal encourages you to check in with yourself each morning and evening with a combination of checkboxes and short writing exercises to help you reflect on your habits, daily activities, and emotions while encouraging gratitude. The format is repetitive, allowing you to track your feelings on a day-to-day basis and note any patterns. Its 184 pages are archival quality, and it comes with a sewn-in ribbon bookmark. It’s also available in a self-care version if that’s closer to what you’re looking to focus on.

Editor praise: “If you’ve tried simple gratitude journals and want to take it up a notch, try Gratitude: A Day and Night Reflection Journal. It’s beautifully made with a durable-feeling soft pink cover and nice thick pages to write on. It prompts you to check in both morning and night to help better track your state of mind over the months. And it makes for a great gift — that’s how I ended up with mine.” — Wesley Salazar, BDG Associate Commerce Editor

3. A Mindfulness Journal You Can Dip Into From Time To Time

For a prompted journal that doesn’t necessitate daily writing, consider this one full of mindfulness exercises that you can turn to whenever you have the time or desire for reflection. Featuring a mix of writing, list-making, and even drawing, you can feel free to tackle the prompts in any order to find what you need in its 148 illustrated pages.

One reviewer wrote: “I have so enjoyed incorporating this journal into my morning ritual. The book includes a mixture of quotes, journal prompts and art activities that calm and center my mind while [exploring] and reconnecting with my creative self. I love this journal so much I purchased a handful more for friends. Thank you Worthy, for creating a beautiful journal!”

4. This Zen-Inspired, Yearlong Guided Journal

If you’re interested in learning more about yourself and mindfulness through the lens of a specific philosophy, this 52-week guided journal that’s based in Zen Buddhism — and penned by a Zen priest and teacher — could be a great fit. One reviewer summarized: “While it is not about Zen doctrine, the monastic tradition or the practices, it certainly doesn’t exclude them. Instead, it’s closer to the experience of meeting a teacher face-to-face, and being encouraged in a few words to explore one’s own presence, wisdom and creativity within the context of the tradition and beyond.”

The journal’s daily writing and reflection prompts are broken into weeklong and seasonal segments, leading you through the year. However, the 176-page journal isn’t dated, so no matter when you purchase the journal, you can hop in and get writing — even if that means starting in the middle of the journal and looping back to the beginning. It’s available in paperback, hardcover, or spiral-bound versions.

One reviewer wrote: “I love this journal! The prompts are thought invoking, the artistry is beautiful, and there is plenty of space to write your daily entry. I look forward to this practice daily!”

5. This Journal With Action Steps & A Self-Care Focus

This 166-page self-care journal is perfect for anyone looking for guidance and action steps as a result of their reflection. Each of its prompts are broken into Reflect, Focus, and Do sections, encouraging a thoughtful dialogue with yourself in order to build more moments of self-care throughout your everyday life. Its prompts aren’t dated or grouped into any larger segments, so you can feel free to write on your own schedule.

One reviewer wrote: “I’m enjoying going through this check-in journal. The questions are thoughtful and the set up is nice as it pushes you towards DOING/Action around the ways you’d like to improve, adjust and pivot. [...] I’m sharing this experience with several others and it's allowing us self-reflection time as well as community-reflection time with relationships to the topics throughout the book.”

6. A 5-Year Blank Journal For Short Daily Entries

This one-line-a-day journal has a page for each day of the year, and each day is broken into five sections so that you can record five years’ worth of entries. The individual pages are printed with dates (e.g. January 1), but you fill in the year yourself — so if you don’t mind some blank spaces, you can certainly hop in and out of the journal as you’d like throughout the year. However, it’s a low-lift effort to write just a bit every day, and over time, it will turn into a five-year record you’ll be glad to have. Because there aren’t prompts, you can also feel free to use the journal how you like, whether as a traditional diary, a daily gratitude journal, or answering prompts of your own. It has 370 pages with golden edges and a sewn-in bookmark.

One reviewer wrote: “I hate taking the time to write but heard it is always a good idea to look back on. It is nice to be able to see how much we have grown. This allows that without having to invest so much time. It gives me a glimpse of where I was at, at that time in my life and I can compare the day through the year. Very good way to track growth. I have even purchased this as a gift for someone because it is such a great idea.”

7. An Illustrated Journal With Inspirational Quotes

If you’re looking for an extra-uplifting journaling experience, consider this illustrated mindfulness journal, which features inspirational, hand-lettered quotes along with creative writing prompts. It has 128 pages and isn’t dated for a free-flowing journaling experience that you can come back to it whenever you have the time or desire.

One reviewer wrote: “I was trying to find a journal that could help me become more mindful of my thoughts and actions. I love this one. With each entry, you learn a little more about yourself.”

8. This Reviewer-Loved Dotted Journal For Guiding Your Own Mindfulness Practice

Don’t want any prompts in your mindfulness journal? A blank journal like this dotted one — beloved by reviewers for bullet journaling, too — is a great selection for a self-guided experience. You can format your own pages, write your own prompts, and use it as often or as little as you like. It’s also available with lined, squared, or blank pages, but for fun formatting and versatility, consider picking up the popular dotted style. It has 251 numbered pages, an index, pocket inside the cover, two sewn-in ribbon bookmarks, and is available in 24 colors.

One reviewer wrote: “This notebook is amazing. The cover is firm, not hard. The pages are nice to the feel and take fountain pen ink wonderfully. I use this as a daily journal and have really enjoyed using it.”