How To Start A Recovery Journal

Journaling And Bullet Journaling


An addiction recovery journal is a powerful tool for gaining insight into your thoughts and feelings, managing stress and anxiety, and cultivating mindfulness. It is highly recommended by Alcoholics Anonymous groups. In this blog post. I will show you how to start an addiction recovery journal and provide you with prompts to help you get started.


What is a recovery journal?

A recovery journal is a tool that encourages you to explore your thoughts, feelings, and experiences related to addiction and substance abuse.

Addiction recovery journaling can help you gain insight into what triggers your substance use, reflect on your progress in recovery, and provide emotional support.


How to start a recovery journal

Here’s how to start a recovery journal to help you start your addiction recovery process;


Define what recovery means to you:

Before you get started, take a moment to write down what recovery means to you. This will help you stay focused and motivated as you progress through your recovery process.


Choose a journal that meets your definition:

Choose a journal that is comfortable for you, one that fits into your lifestyle and budget. If possible, use a journal with lined or blank pages so that you can draw and write freely.


Set up a consistent journaling routine:

Give yourself the gift of consistent time to write in your recovery journal. Carve out 5-15 minutes each day to do this. This will help you stay on track with your goals and create a habit of reflection and accountability.


Begin writing:

When it’s time to begin writing, start with something simple. Try writing your thoughts and feelings without judging them or censoring yourself. This will help you get into the habit of being honest about your experiences and finding strength in vulnerability.

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Use writing prompts:

If you find yourself stuck for ideas, try using prompts to guide your writing. Journal prompts will help you find new ways to reflect on your recovery process and gain insight into your thoughts and behaviors.


Review and reflect:

At the end of each journaling session, take a moment to review what you wrote and reflect on your progress. This will help you stay focused on your goals and celebrate the small successes along the way.



What do you write in a recovery journal?

Here are some writing prompts to help you get started;

  • Write about a time when you felt proud of yourself for handling a difficult situation without turning to substance abuse.
  • Describe an experience that taught you something valuable about your recovery process.
  • Reflect on one thing you’ve done during the past week to further your recovery goals.
  • What emotions and feelings come up when you think about recovery?
  • What do you find yourself worrying about the most in your addiction recovery journey?
  • What are your top goals for your recovery process?
  • Write down an affirmation or mantra that helps give you strength in moments of weakness.
  • How can you build healthy, positive relationships with those around you?
  • What advice or words of wisdom would you give to someone in early recovery?
  • Describe a moment when you felt empowered and strong.
  • Reflect on something positive that has come from your addiction experience.
  • What strategies have helped manage cravings?
  • How do you practice self-compassion during difficult moments?
  • What has been the most challenging part of recovery so far?
  • How can you find a balance between taking care of your physical and emotional needs?
  • What do you feel ashamed of in your recovery journey?
  • What are some ways to foster a sense of hope and optimism?
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How can journaling help with recovery?

Starting a Recovery Journal is a strong tool in the recovery process. Journaling can offer several benefits, including:

  • Writing things in a journal can serve as a mindfulness practice, increasing awareness and presence.
  • Journaling can improve self-awareness, leading to a greater understanding of one’s values, beliefs, and motivations.
  • Keeping a journal can be a form of self-care, prioritizing and prioritizing emotional well-being.
  • Journaling can provide a sense of control in a world that may feel unpredictable or chaotic, leading to increased feelings of resilience and adaptability.
  • It is a good way to keep focus on your mental health while going through recovery.
  • Practicing journaling can offer more filters to help sort through thoughts and feelings, offering clarity in decision-making.
  • Writing can provide a platform for reflecting on past mistakes, exploring different perspectives
  • You can use a journal tracker to track your long-term recovery goals.
  • It is a vital tool for you and your family members and friends to discover the “new you”


How to Maintain a Recovery Journaling Habit

Starting a journaling habit is one thing, but maintaining it is another. Here are some ideas to assist you in keeping your journaling practice:


Make it a Priority

Treat your journaling practice as a non-negotiable part of your self-care routine. Make it a priority and schedule it into your day.

Be Consistent

Consistency is critical when it comes to journaling. Aim to journal every day, even if it’s just for a few minutes.


Keep it Simple

Refrain from putting sure to write long, elaborate entries every day. Some days, a simple list or bullet points may be all you need.

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Stay Accountable

Find a partner with whom you can share responsibility and be held accountable, or join a support group.

Bottom Line

Recovery can be a dicey aspect of life. Journaling can help you to document progress, and stay focused on your goals.

It is a way of being mindful while developing self-awareness and understanding. With consistency and accountability, journaling can be a powerful ally in your recovery journey.


This can be a lifelong process, and it is important to practice patience and self-compassion as you navigate the ups and downs.

Remember that recovery looks different for everyone, and you are in charge of crafting your journey. Journaling can help to make this journey easier as it provides an outlet for self-expression, understanding, and growth.



  • Ben

    I'm Ben, a data engineer who adores journaling. My passion for recording life experiences inspired me to develop Otto's Journal, an online diary app. Join me as I blend data and storytelling in the ever-changing tech world, making journaling more accessible and exciting.

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