55 Journal Prompts for Teens for Goals, Feelings, & Self-Discovery

You have your favorite pen and a journal you love. Now it's time to get down to writing — and these prompts will help you get started.

Published January 9, 2024
Teenage girl writing in her journal

You probably share some things with your friends and even fewer with your parents, but a journal can be a private way of expressing every emotion your life offers. If you're excited to start writing but need a little guidance, you may want some journal prompts that suit your life as a teenager. Give these prompts a try and you'll be journaling effortlessly in no time. 

Journal Prompts to Plan Your Future

It's almost as if the moment you become a teenager everyone wants to know what you plan to do as an adult. While thinking about your future is important, it's also important to give yourself grace and time during this season. These prompts will help you think about your plans without feeling so overwhelmed. 

  • Think about your life five years from now. What does the average day look like?
  • If money, time, and effort weren't a factor, what would you do with your life?
  • Imagine yourself ten years in the future traveling in time to visit you in this moment. What would you ask yourself?
  • Removing career from the equation, what do you want your life to be like in adulthood?
  • What major goal would you like to achieve by 20? 30? 40?
  • What are some things your parents do that you would also like to do as a parent someday?
  • You're meeting up with your best friend but it's ten years down the road. Describe your interaction in detail.
  • If you were the parent you always wanted, what would you be like?
  • It's your ten-year high school reunion. What do you want people to notice about you?
  • Picture your college graduation and describe it in detail. Who is there? What is your degree? What are your summer plans?
  • If your dream job had no title, what would the job description be?
  • If your first choice career didn't work out, describe three other jobs you might enjoy.
  • If you could take any sort of class to learn something, what would it be?
  • You're going on vacation as an adult. Where are you going and what does the agenda look like for the week?
  • What three things can you do this year to make your dream life more probable? 

Related: Creative High School Journal Prompts

Teen Journal Prompts for All Your Emotions

Being a teenager is tough when you're learning how to process all the life changes and challenges thrown your way every day. When it feels like no one really understands, try one of these prompts to help you work through those emotions and thoughts.

Young teenage girl sitting on pier and writing notes
  • If you could do this day over, what is one thing that only you could do differently?
  • List five emotions you feel and why it's okay to feel them right now.
  • If you had to prescribe yourself an experience or solution to work through your current problem, what would it be?
  • You get to choose three emotions to experience for a whole week. What are they?
  • List the things currently adding stress to your life then cross out the ones you can control.
  • Have you had any feelings invalidated recently? Write yourself a letter validating each one.
  • Your brain is hosting a meeting with all your strongest emotions. How does the meeting go?
  • Think of everything you feel right now. List out each emotion. Now assign a color, shape, song, or anything else to each one.
  • Imagine your life is a movie. What type of movie is it? Who is playing you? What part of the film are you currently in?
  • What was the most recent thing to make you smile?
  • Think of the last time you cried. Why? Has anything changed since then?
  • If you had to permit yourself to feel one emotion what emotion would it be? Why do you usually avoid this emotion?
Need to Know

The point of a prompt is inspiration. It's okay if you veer from the original topic. Go where the writing wind takes you! 

Journaling Questions to Discover Yourself

This is a beautiful season of discovering who you are. It all comes in small pieces over time, but you start to see the picture eventually. These prompts will help you dig into that picture and start to see all the tiny details that make up who you are. 

  • If you were an element (fire, wind, earth, or water) what would you be and why?
  • Think about your favorite food. What does it say about who you are?
  • What is your biggest fear? Describe how it makes you feel in detail.
  • If your best friend had to pick your writing from a group of 100 others, what could you write about yourself that would help them know it's yours?
  • What is one thing you wish you could be good at and why?
  • List all the things you like about yourself. Try to list at least ten things.
  • If you were a Starbucks order, what would you be? Why?
  • What is one big way you've changed in the past year?
  • What's a common misconception people have about you?
  • What's one thing about you that you wish people knew?
  • If you could change one thing about yourself what would it be? How can you choose to accept this part of yourself instead?
  • What do you believe is currently your biggest obstacle in life? 
  • Who is your greatest role model? What do you admire about them?
  • Write about a defining moment in your life, positive or negative.

Related: What Your Favorite Color Says About Your Personality 

Journal Prompts for All Your Relationships 

Relationships are hard no matter your age. From your friends to your family and all the romances in between, you're looking at a lifetime of learning how to understand relationships with the people you care about. Work through some of those things now by asking yourself these questions. 

Young man holding diary
  • If you and your mom/dad switched places for a day, how would that go?
  • List out everyone in your life that's important to you and one thing you love about them.
  • Think of a relationship that's brought you pain. Now list three good things you learned or experienced from that relationship.
  • Write a letter you don't intend to send to someone you love.
  • Have you ever had a broken heart? What was that like?
  • Make a list of what you value in a friend. You might also add the names of friends or family members who embody each characteristic. 
  • Have you ever had to apologize to someone you love? How has your relationship changed since then?
  • List out three things your best friend taught you.
  • If you could ask a question of a family member who has passed on or one you've never met, what would it be?
  • Is there a relationship in your life that you would like to improve?
  • What is something you have in common with one of your parents?
  • Describe your ideal date. Where would you go? Who would you go with?
  • If you had to rate yourself as a friend, on a scale from one to ten, what rating would you give yourself and why? 
  • If you could go on vacation and only invite one person, who would it be? What would your trip be like?

Related: Simple Self-Care Ideas for Teens 

Journal Your Way

Remember, your journal is uniquely yours. You can fill it with your thoughts, feelings, and stories in any way you choose. Select a few prompts to get you started and then keep journaling in a way that brings you back to your pen time and time again. There is no right or wrong way to keep a journal.

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55 Journal Prompts for Teens for Goals, Feelings, & Self-Discovery