Journal Ideas for Teens — Get teens writing in their journals with these new teenage journal topics!
For teenagers, writing in a journal regularly helps foster a love of writing and build excellent writing skills. However, the one problem teens often face is figuring out what to write about. If they can’t think of something interesting to write about, they might not even try.
That’s where good writing prompts can help. With some topics to guide them, teenagers will spend more time writing instead of giving up because they can’t decide on what to write.
Further, journaling offers excellent mental health benefits for kids, teens, and adults. Beyond these benefits, writing in a journal uses both sides of the brain and helps to encourage free flow thinking and daily writing. Help get your teenagers writing in their journals more often with these journal ideas for teens.
61 Journal Ideas for Teens
- What’s the best song you’ve ever heard, in your opinion?
- What calms you down when you’re feeling upset or mad?
- What is the best compliment someone has ever given to you?
- Discuss your happiest memory.
- What is something or someone in your life you feel you can’t live without?
- Describe your most exciting and joyous life experience.
- What is the most challenging thing you’ve ever faced in your life?
- When you become a parent, what will you do differently than your parents?
- Talk about a piece of advice given by an adult that you believe is entirely wrong. Why do you feel that way?
- How does music impact your life?
- Is there a line between insanity and creativity?
- Describe what you think your life will be like in ten years.
- What is one thing that you feel you do really well?
- What are your pet peeves?
- What’s your favorite day of the week, and why?
- How do you feel about your name? Do you think it suits you? Why do you feel that way?
- Describe in detail your idea of a perfect date.
- Write about what you appreciate most about your parents.
- Do you get along with your siblings? Why or why not?
- Discuss a significant world problem and how you believe it should be solved.
- What is the biggest issue facing teenagers today? How should it be dealt with?
- Have you ever overreacted to something that you now find silly? Write about why you overreacted.
- If you could travel anywhere you wanted to, where would you go? Why?
- Who is the person you trust the most? Why do you trust them?
- If you could travel back through time to visit your kindergarten self, what advice would you give?
- Write about the top five things that make you happy.
- What is something you’ve had to overcome in your life?
- Write about 5-10 things you feel grateful for right now.
- Write about a fun fact about yourself that no one knows about.
- What in your life makes you feel alive?
- If there was a movie about your life, what actor should portray you?
- Name 3-5 songs that would make up the soundtrack of your life. Why did you choose those songs?
- If you had to choose between being popular or smart, which would you choose?
- Do you ever want to be a parent in the future? Why or why not?
- How do you define success?
- What things make you feel sad?
- What is your favorite holiday and why is that holiday special to you?
- What would you do if there was no television? Would this be something good or bad?
- Do you think you could go for a week without internet? Why or why not?
- What things make you feel afraid? Why?
- Would you rather have a career you love that paid little money or a career you hate that paid a lot of money? Why?
- Talk about a time in your life where being persistent paid off.
- Discuss a time you had to perform in front of a group. Did you enjoy it? How did you feel?
- Is there anything in life you’d be willing to fight for?
- If time did not exist, how would it affect your life?
- How would your life be changed if there were no planes, cars, boats, buses, or trains?
- If you found gold in your yard, what would you do?
- If you were going on a trip around the world but could only take two people, who would you take with you? Why would you take them?
- Do you feel like going to college is a requirement for being successful today? Why or why not?
- Talk about a time that your parents made you feel embarrassed.
- When you’re online, do you act differently than you do in person?
- Describe your earliest memory.
- If you were given a million dollars, how would you choose to spend it? Why?
- If you could have a superhero power, what power would you like to have? Why?
- What’s one of the most difficult things about being a teenager?
- If you had to describe your personality as a color, which color would you choose?
- What do you think are the most essential qualities to have in a good friend?
- What makes people truly beautiful?
- Come up with your definition of courage.
- Is personality or appearance more important to you? Why?
- Why do you feel that honesty is important?
See even more teen-focused writing prompts and ideas.
With the stresses and pressure of real life and social media, young people can use journal prompts for reflection and creative thinking about the situations they encounter on a daily basis. A regular journaling habit helps boost writing skills and counteract symptoms of depression.
Reluctant writers are often inspired by writing about their favorite things. If the list above didn’t get them going, the list of ideas below just might! Ask them to write about:
- their favorite thing to do on summer vacation
- favorite place
- favorite food
- favorite video game
- favorite fictional character
- favorite childhood memory
- favorite season of the year
- dream job
- favorite celebrity or famous actor
- the best advice (or worst!) they have received so far
- their best friend
- best concert
Using creative journal prompts to write on a regular basis is a great use of time for middle school students, high school students, and beyond!
Journaling Benefits and a Wonderful Journal to Use with Our List of Teen Journal Topics
The following article was written by Jannetje van Leeuwen. She is the Co-creator of NOSO Journal for Teens. Dedicated to boosting teen confidence and wellbeing, “The NOSO Journal provides an introduction to journaling for teenagers, making the benefits of journaling more easily accessible to boost teen confidence and positively impact wellbeing. With NOSO Journal we aim to inspire teenagers to grow into their best selves.”
We all kind of inherently know the power of journaling, its ability to give breathing space, create clearer thinking, pave the way for creative breakthroughs, to provide a lens for looking at things anew, to put things in perspective, to dream, to create.
As an advocate of journaling (I’ve been keeping a journal since I can remember), I can attest to the profound and positive impact it has had on my life. As a mother – the thought arises time and time again – I imagine how my kids would benefit if they got to discover the joy of journaling at their age. How amazing a gift would that be to give them?
So, I decided to research and share 3 bulletproof benefits of journaling that would have a massive positive impact on teens.
3 Journaling Benefits
1. It can help teens to Learn Better
Writing and journaling notes is a process of revision and helps us to remember things better. Neuroscientists are vehemently against the decline in putting pen to paper – because there is a neural circuitry that occurs that helps us learn and remember better than if we use tech, which triggers a different part of the brain and uses a repetitive, less complex activity of typing.
Better learning means better exam results, better remembering important facts, more focus, easier decision making, and thus getting more out of life and learning. What’s not to like about that?!
2. It can help teenagers Be Happier and Work Through Stress
Stress is a major issue, rising among teens. “75% of mental illnesses start before a child reaches their 18th birthday, while 50% of mental health problems in adult life (excluding dementia) take root before the age of 15.”
Journaling provides a positive outlet, can help teenagers tame their stress and learn to make sense of their emotions. It can help identify the cause of their stresses, anxieties or whatever is troubling them. Goals are set more easily and clearly; they become tangible and attainable.
Journaling also elicits a state of mind similar to mindfulness – which is a buzz word amongst many – and for good reason. As it is widely associated with greater happiness, giving more meaning to our experiences and more focus on what is important to us.
3. It can help our youth to get Better Sleep
Sleep is such a vital part of teens’ growth and development. “The life of today’s teenager is busy and in constant flux. They have increasing responsibilities at school and at home, their social lives are expanding, their independence is growing, and they’re making plans for their future. Adolescence is a time of significant maturation—physical, emotional, intellectual. Sleep fuels these important processes. Good, plentiful sleep is essential to teens’ development, growth, and quality of life.”
Screen activity is taking away precious sleeping time from our adolescents. Bringing back some analog, offline activity positively influences sleep and wellbeing. By writing things down that we are grateful for, for example, can already lead to better, deeper and longer sleep.
Until next time, write on…
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PS Check out this resource on how to keep a diary or journal for teens