How Couples in love use Relationship journal prompts

…and how you can too! If you want a better relationship, then do what successful couples do, work on it! There are so many ways to work on your relationship that are actually enjoyable. You can even journal together and use relationship journal prompts and journal as a way to develop a happier, more intimate, closer relationship with your partner.

A few weeks ago, my fiance and I went for supper with some friends. They are two of our closest friends. It was just the four of us. We had a great time. Our friends are fun, interesting and interested. They have great communication between themselves and relate really well to each other. They have a good relationship, to all intents and purposes you would say they have the ‘perfect relationship’ (although we all know there is no such thing!).

They admit to being each other’s best friend, they enjoy spending time together, they navigate daily life together well. Without even asking them what the secret is to their beautiful strong relationship, I know the answer.

They work at it.

Yes, they get upset with each other, yes the mundane-ness of every day life affects them too. But they work at it. If things are wrong, they work at it. When they have periods of time when they don’t see much of each other, they fix it.

In short, they communicate.

Often, the petty grind of every day interferes with our ability to communicate in even our long-term romantic relationship. You know, the one that is so special, that we neglect it! We allow small grudges to get in the way of just being nice. We are stressed and anxious about work/the children/finances and the stress spills over into our evening. Soon, we can’t remember the last time that we spent fun time together. Small walls grow up that eventually become big walls, and that becomes problematic.

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The value of good communication

So back to communication. The best way to get your relationship back on track, or keep it on track is good communication. What do couples in a successful relationship do to maintain that communication? Many couples go to therapy or counselling to learn to communicate. Some couples go on marriage courses together. Other couples realise that they need to spend time together and seek out joint interests or hobbies.

Journaling and communication

Journaling can also help your relationship. You may not have thought of this before. But if you would like something to do that doesn’t cost any money, could be revelatory in terms of how you are feeling and how your partner is feeling and could help you explore your relationship in a gentle, empathetic way then consider journaling.

What is journaling?

A quick description of what journaling is. One way of describing it is:

Journaling is the practice of regularly writing down one’s thoughts, feelings, and experiences in a journal or notebook. It is often used as a tool for self-reflection, personal growth, and stress management.

Next, how can journaling help your relationship?

How can journaling help your relationship?

  1. Through better communication: Journaling can help you articulate your thoughts and feelings more clearly. By writing down your thoughts, you can better understand them and organize them in a way that makes sense to you. This can make it easier for you to communicate your feelings to your partner, which can lead to more meaningful conversations and better understanding between the two of you.
  2. Encouraging increased self-awareness: Journaling can help you become more self-aware and recognize patterns in your behaviour and thought processes. When you understand your own triggers and tendencies, you can communicate them to your partner and work together to find ways to manage them. Self-awareness can really help you look at how past relationships are affecting your current relationships.
  3. By improved problem-solving: When you write down your problems and concerns, it can help you look at them more objectively and come up with potential solutions. This can help you approach conflicts in your relationship in a more constructive way. Conflicts are sometimes hard to resolve if we don’t want to leave our comfort zone of being right. Gentle, non-accusatory problem solving can remove the comfort zone issue.
  4. Helping to reduce stress: Journaling can be a stress-relieving activity, allowing you to release pent-up emotions and frustrations. By reducing your stress levels, you may be less likely to take out your negative emotions on your partner and more able to approach your relationship with a positive attitude.

Are you interested?

Woman reclining with a white mug of coffee, reading her journal. Accompanies the blog post on relationship journal prompts

Here are some ways you can start to explore journaling together:

How to start journaling as a couple

Journaling as a couple can be a great way to deepen your connection, improve communication, and gain insight into your relationship. Here are some steps to get started:

  1. Discuss the idea with your partner: Before you start journaling together, make sure your partner is on board with the idea. Explain the benefits of journaling as a couple and ask for their input and suggestions.
  2. Choose a journal: Decide on a shared journal that you both like and that has enough space for both of you to write. You might choose a blank notebook or a guided journal specifically designed for couples. You could also have your own journals.
  3. Set a schedule: Agree on a schedule for journaling together. It could be daily, weekly, or on specific days of the week. Make sure to find a time that works for both of you and that you can commit to.
  4. Decide on a format: There are different ways to journal together, such as writing letters to each other, answering prompts, a regular set of journal questions that you work through each time, or simply writing about your thoughts and feelings. You can also use the journal writing prompts at the end of this blog post. Decide on a format that works for both of you. This can change as you go along. Journaling is a flexible practice, you can do whatever you want!
  5. Agree on privacy: Make sure you both agree on how private your journal will be. Will you read each other’s entries or keep them private? Agree on a level of privacy that you both feel comfortable with.
  6. Start writing: Once you have agreed on a journal, schedule, format, and privacy, start writing! Share your thoughts, feelings, and experiences with each other. Be open and honest, and remember that the purpose of journaling is to deepen your connection and improve your relationship.
  7. Reflect on your entries: After a period of time, reflect on your entries together. What did you learn about each other? What insights did you gain? Use your journaling as a way to start conversations and deepen your understanding of each other.

Differences and similarities between marriage journal and couples journal

There will be a difference in the way that you journal if you are married or a non-married but totally devoted couple compared with being a couple but not being married or having an emotional and financial commitment to each other.

A marriage journal and a couples journal are similar in that they are both tools used to enhance communication and connection between partners. However, there are some differences between the two.

A marriage journal typically focuses on the specific aspects of the relationship that are unique to a married couple, such as managing finances together, raising children, dealing with in-laws, and navigating other challenges that may arise in a long-term committed relationship. A marriage journal may also include prompts and exercises designed to help partners strengthen their emotional bond and deepen their understanding of each other.

On the other hand, a couples journal is a more general tool that can be used by any romantic partners, whether they are married or not. It may focus on broader topics such as communication, intimacy, shared values, and future goals. A couples journal may also include prompts and exercises that encourage partners to explore their individual needs and desires as well as their shared aspirations for the future.

However if you are married, go back and look at shared values and future goals. If you are in a couple but not married, look forward to your attitude towards children, finances and in-laws. If you are in a couple and are exploring whether this person is your potential partner for life, then these questions, asked in a non-confrontational way, are great. The practice of journaling helps you be more open with each other, but also to learn more about yourself.

Ultimately, the choice between a marriage journal and a couples journal will depend on the specific needs and goals of the partners involved. Both can be effective tools for building a stronger and more fulfilling relationship, regardless of whether or not the partners are married.

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How journaling can support a healthy relationship

Journaling can support a healthy relationship in several ways:

  1. Increased self-awareness: Journaling allows individuals to reflect on their thoughts, feelings, and actions, which can increase self-awareness. This self-awareness can help individuals identify their own strengths and weaknesses, and become more mindful of their behaviours in relationships. By becoming more self-aware, individuals can work towards being a better person. Always start with what you can improve in yourself, go to work on improving yourself as your priority.
  2. Improved communication: Writing down one’s thoughts and feelings can be a helpful way to process emotions and articulate them more clearly. This can help individuals communicate more effectively in their relationships, as they can express themselves more clearly and calmly. Do you know what your partner’s love language is? This will certainly affect the way that you communicate with each other.
  3. Reduced stress: Journaling can be a helpful way to manage stress and anxiety, which can improve overall emotional regulation and reduce conflict in relationships. When individuals are better able to manage their own emotions, they are less likely to react impulsively or lash out at their partners.
  4. Increased gratitude: Journaling can also help individuals focus on the positive aspects of their relationships and express gratitude for their partner. This can help build a sense of appreciation and deepen emotional connections between partners.
  5. Processing conflicts: Journaling can provide a safe space to process and reflect on conflicts that may arise in a relationship. It’s easier to see what your own deal breakers are, but it’s important to know what they are for your partner. By writing down their thoughts and feelings, individuals can gain a clearer understanding of their own perspective and work towards resolving conflicts in a constructive manner.
  6. Unconditional love: Journaling can help promote unconditional love by providing a safe space for each partner to express their thoughts and feelings, leading to deeper understanding, empathy, and connection. Unconditional love does not necessarily strip away emotions; rather, it involves recognizing and accepting emotions while choosing to love without conditions. When we love unconditionally, we cultivate a deep sense of compassion, forgiveness, and understanding, which allows us to see our partner’s true essence beyond their flaws and mistakes. By returning to this state of unconditional love, we can let go of negative emotions and cultivate a deeper connection with our partner.
  7. Improved mental health: journaling together is a very simple way to reduce stress, be open and honest with each other and relax and enjoy being in a loving relationship and spending time together.

So you see how journaling can be a helpful tool for individuals to improve their self-awareness, communication, emotional regulation, and gratitude, which can support healthy and fulfilling relationships.

Find the right journaling format

Finding the right format for your marriage journal largely depends on your personal preferences and the purpose of the journal. Here are some tips to help you choose the right format:

  1. Consider the purpose of your journal: Do you want to record your daily thoughts and emotions, or do you want to track your progress as a couple? Your purpose will help determine the best format for your journal.
  2. Decide on the medium: You can choose to keep your journal in a physical notebook or a digital format, such as a Google Doc or a journaling app.
  3. Choose a frequency: Decide how often you want to write in your journal. Do you want to write daily, weekly, or monthly? This will help determine the format and length of your entries.
  4. Determine the structure: Some couples prefer a structured format with prompts or questions to guide their writing, while others prefer a more open-ended approach.
  5. Consider adding visual elements: You can add photos, drawings, or other visual elements to your journal to make it more personal and meaningful.
  6. Be flexible: Don’t be afraid to switch up the format or try new things. Your journal should evolve and grow with you as a couple. Establishing a journaling practice can feel awkward at first, so just accept that and find what works for you.

Remember, the most important thing is to find a format that works for you and your partner, and that helps you achieve your goals for your marriage journal.

Set some ground rules for journaling together

When setting ground rules for relationship journaling, here are some important factors to consider:

  1. Communication: First and foremost, it is important to communicate openly with your partner about the purpose and goals of the relationship journaling. Discuss why you want to do it and what you hope to achieve. Also, agree on a set of guidelines or ground rules to follow during the process. Keep it simple. Don’t overcomplicate the process. It’s supposed to be enjoyable, not a forensic examination!
  2. Confidentiality: Agree on the level of confidentiality surrounding the journal entries. Will they be shared only between the two of you, or will you both have the option to share them with others? Establishing boundaries around confidentiality is crucial to building trust in the process.
  3. Consistency: Establishing a consistent time and frequency for journaling is important to ensure that it becomes a regular habit. Decide on the best time of day or week to sit down and write, and make a commitment to sticking to the schedule.
  4. Honesty: Honesty is key in any relationship, and this is especially true when it comes to relationship journaling. Make it clear that both partners are expected to be honest and open about their thoughts and feelings in the journal entries.
  5. Respect: Respect each other’s privacy and boundaries. Avoid criticizing or judging each other’s entries, and instead focus on listening and understanding each other’s perspectives.
  6. Purpose: Set clear intentions for the purpose of the journaling. Is it to improve communication, resolve conflicts, or deepen the emotional connection between partners? Identifying the purpose will help guide the content and tone of the entries.
  7. Tolerance: There is no right or wrong way to do this kind of journaling. It is what you want and need. Don’t ignore the little things that will make both of you comfortable. Ignore his inability to spell and he may ignore your inability to write in a straight line!

By establishing these ground rules, relationship journaling can become a powerful tool for deepening emotional intimacy and appreciating the best traits in your partner.

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Be patient as you journal together

Patience is an essential quality to cultivate when engaging in couples journaling therapy. Here are some tips that can help you be patient during this process:

  1. Set realistic expectations: Couples journaling therapy is not a quick fix, and it takes time to see progress. If this is the first time you have done anything like this it may feel awkward at first. Setting realistic expectations for the process can help you manage your expectations and stay patient.
  2. Practice mindfulness: Mindfulness can help you stay present and focused on the process, rather than getting caught up in your thoughts and emotions. Take a few deep breaths before beginning your journaling session and try to stay mindful throughout the process.
  3. Be compassionate: Be kind and compassionate with yourself and your partner during the process. Remember that healing takes time, and it’s okay to make mistakes or struggle along the way. Being compassionate will help you in all aspects of your future relationships, not just with your partner but with friends and family too.
  4. Communicate openly: Communication is key in any relationship, including couples therapy. If you’re feeling impatient or frustrated, communicate that with your partner and therapist. This can help you work through your feelings and develop strategies for managing impatience. Deeper connections come from open, honest communication.
  5. Celebrate progress: Celebrate small victories along the way, such as improved communication or a better understanding of your partner. Acknowledging progress can help you stay motivated and patient throughout the process.

Remember that couples journaling therapy is a journey, and it’s important to be patient with yourself and your partner as you work through the process. With time, effort, and a commitment to the process, you can build a stronger and healthier relationship.

Relationship journal prompts

Use these prompts whenever you need them. Enjoy them and what they reveal about each of you and I hope that you and your partner gain a deeper and more loving insight into each other as a result.

30 relationship journal prompts about self-sacrificial love:

  1. What does self-sacrificial love mean to you?
  2. Have you ever made a significant sacrifice for someone you love? If so, what was it?
  3. How do you differentiate between healthy and unhealthy self-sacrifice in a relationship?
  4. Are there any situations in which you believe self-sacrifice is not necessary or appropriate in a relationship?
  5. How do you express your love through acts of self-sacrifice?
  6. What are some ways you can tell if your partner is willing to make sacrifices for you?
  7. Have you ever felt like you were sacrificing too much in a relationship? If so, how did you handle it?
  8. In what ways have you seen self-sacrificial love modeled in your life?
  9. How do you balance your own needs and desires with those of your partner when it comes to self-sacrifice?
  10. How has self-sacrificial love affected your relationships in the past?
  11. How do you cope with the fear of being taken advantage of or being hurt by your self-sacrifice?
  12. What are some common misconceptions about self-sacrificial love in relationships?
  13. How can you identify when your partner is asking too much of you in terms of self-sacrifice?
  14. Have you ever regretted making a sacrifice for someone you love? If so, what did you learn from the experience?
  15. In what ways can self-sacrificial love be an expression of respect in a relationship?
  16. How do you avoid feeling like you are giving more than your partner in terms of self-sacrifice?
  17. What are some strategies you can use to communicate your boundaries and needs when it comes to self-sacrifice?
  18. How can self-sacrificial love contribute to the growth and development of a relationship?
  19. Have you ever experienced conflict in a relationship due to differences in expectations around self-sacrifice?
  20. How can you tell if your self-sacrifice is motivated by love or by fear of losing the relationship?
  21. What are some ways you can show appreciation for your partner’s self-sacrifices?
  22. How do you maintain a sense of self-worth and value in a relationship where you are often making sacrifices?
  23. What are some ways you can foster an environment of mutual self-sacrifice in a relationship?
  24. How do you know when it’s time to set boundaries around self-sacrifice in a relationship?
  25. Have you ever experienced guilt or shame around your self-sacrifice in a relationship? If so, how did you overcome it?
  26. How can you ensure that your self-sacrifice is coming from a place of love rather than a desire to control or manipulate your partner?
  27. What are some common misconceptions about self-sacrificial love in romantic relationships?
  28. How can you balance the desire to make sacrifices for your partner with the need to maintain a sense of self-respect?
  29. In what ways can self-sacrificial love be an expression of trust in a relationship?
  30. What are some ways you can recognize when your partner is making self-sacrifices for you, and how can you respond in a way that honours their efforts?

20 relationship journal prompts about thoughtfulness:

  1. What does thoughtfulness mean to you in the context of a relationship?
  2. How have you seen thoughtfulness modeled in healthy relationships?
  3. In what ways do you try to be thoughtful in your own relationships?
  4. Have you ever experienced a lack of thoughtfulness in a relationship? How did it make you feel?
  5. What are some simple ways you can show thoughtfulness in your relationship?
  6. How can thoughtfulness improve the quality of your communication with your partner?
  7. What are some challenges you’ve faced in trying to be more thoughtful in your relationship?
  8. How do you balance being thoughtful with setting healthy boundaries in your relationship?
  9. In what ways can thoughtfulness help you build deeper intimacy with your partner?
  10. Have you ever received a particularly thoughtful gesture from a partner? How did it impact your relationship?
  11. How can thoughtfulness help you navigate conflict in your relationship?
  12. What are some common misconceptions about thoughtfulness in relationships?
  13. In what ways can thoughtfulness help you build trust with your partner?
  14. How can you cultivate a habit of thoughtfulness in your relationship?
  15. Have you ever struggled to feel appreciated in a relationship despite your efforts to be thoughtful? How did you address the situation?
  16. How can thoughtfulness help you demonstrate your love for your partner in a meaningful way?
  17. What are some potential barriers to being more thoughtful in your relationship, and how can you overcome them?
  18. How can thoughtfulness help you show empathy and understanding for your partner’s experiences and emotions?
  19. How can you use thoughtfulness to strengthen the emotional bond between you and your partner?
  20. In what ways can thoughtfulness help you demonstrate respect for your partner and their needs in your relationship?
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20 journaling prompts for questions to ask your partner when you want to understand their mental health:

  1. What emotions are you currently experiencing and how are they affecting you?
  2. What triggers your anxiety, and how do you cope with it?
  3. What activities or hobbies help you feel calm and centred?
  4. What are your biggest stressors right now, and how can I support you through them?
  5. What are some negative thought patterns you’ve noticed in yourself, and how do they impact your mental health?
  6. What are some healthy coping mechanisms you use when you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed?
  7. What are some ways that you take care of your mental health on a daily basis?
  8. What are some things that you wish you could talk about more openly with me?
  9. How do you know when you need to take a break or step back from a situation to prioritize your mental health?
  10. How has your mental health changed over time, and what have you learned about yourself through those changes?
  11. What are some things that I can do to support you when you’re feeling down or anxious?
  12. What are some things that you’re grateful for in your life right now?
  13. How has your mental health impacted your relationships with others, and what have you learned from those experiences?
  14. What are some goals you have for your mental health, and how can I help you achieve them?
  15. What are some things that you do to unwind and relax after a stressful day?
  16. What are some things that you feel proud of accomplishing lately?
  17. What are some ways that you’ve grown or changed as a result of your mental health journey?
  18. How do you define self-care, and what are some self-care practices that you find helpful?
  19. What are some things that you’d like to work on in your personal or professional life that would positively impact your mental health?
  20. What are some positive affirmations or mantras that help you feel better when you’re feeling down or anxious?

Finally, to end with some fun prompts…

20 journaling prompts you can ask your partner to help you both have more fun together:

  1. What’s one thing we used to do together that we don’t do anymore that you really enjoyed?
  2. What’s one activity or hobby you’ve always wanted to try but haven’t yet?
  3. What are your favourite memories of times we had fun together?
  4. What’s something we could do together that would make us both laugh?
  5. If we had a free day with no obligations, what’s something fun we could do together?
  6. What’s a place you’ve always wanted to go together but haven’t yet?
  7. What’s a game or activity we could do at home to have some fun together?
  8. What’s a restaurant or food experience we could try together that we’ve never had before?
  9. What’s an adventure we could take together that would push us out of our comfort zones?
  10. What’s something we could do together to make a positive impact in our community?
  11. What’s a movie or TV show we could watch together that we’ve both been meaning to see?
  12. What’s a new skill or hobby we could learn together?
  13. What’s something we could do together that we’ve never done before?
  14. What’s a place in our city/town that we could explore together?
  15. What’s a funny or silly challenge we could do together for a laugh?
  16. What’s something we could do to surprise each other and make each other smile?
  17. What’s a memory or experience from your childhood that we could recreate together?
  18. What’s a way we could incorporate more playfulness into our daily lives?
  19. What’s something we could do together to connect with nature and enjoy the outdoors?
  20. What’s a way we could celebrate a milestone or accomplishment together in a fun way?

I really hope you have enjoyed this post. If you would like to read more on similar topics why not try:

17 reflection journal prompts to get to know yourself better
Powerful Words of affirmation for daughter, niece and sister
How to create your own self love healing quotes journal

Finally, let me tell you a little bit about Wardrobe Journaling. It is the process I have created that helps you understand yourself better through journaling and through thinking about the clothes you wear and your own unique personality. There are lots of Wardrobe Journaling blog posts available on this site. There is also the entirely unique Wardrobe Journaling course. If you want to take a step further into your own self development and self care this is a great, gentle but powerful course to take.

Have a great day!

Sarah