Think of a moment in your life where you experienced complete bliss and felt on top of the world.
Think of a moment in your life that was totally enlightening, that made you reach a new level of awareness.
Now think of a time in which you were struggling with a seemingly impossible problem and then found a way to solve it.
The person you have visualized — their wisdom, their positive energy, their ability to connect the dots — that is you.
We have all a better guide in ourselves, if we would attend to it, than any other person can be.Jane Austen
We have somehow gotten used to looking for answers outside. It’s now easier than ever: all it takes is a quick internet search.
Or it could be a book, a podcast, someone’s advice, a conversation with a friend, etc. And there is nothing wrong with that, and these things certainly help.
The issue is when we forget about our own power — our higher self’s intuition and ability to guide us toward solutions and answers.
We often tend to have the lazy approach and look outside. But if we were to focus on our own inner world, look inside, listen to that inner voice, we would be amazed at its resourcefulness.
To be able to connect with your higher self is an invaluable skill, and yes, you can learn to do that.
Techniques like meditation and visualization are examples of that. But in today’s post we’ll have a look at journaling, specifically journal prompts to connect with your higher self.
What is the higher self?
The term higher self has often been used in spirituality and psychology, but there are different definitions of the word.
You can imagine your higher self as a guide, a wiser entity, who is always there with you and that can talk to you when you need advice.
Their advice may appear in the form of images, symbols, dreams, intuitions, or synchronicity.
Anyway, here are three possible definitions of the higher self.
Higher self = best self
This would be the easiest, most basic definition. The higher self is the best version of yourself.
If you can think of all your best qualities, your best and highest state of mind, your energy at its peak, you can then imagine your higher self as the entity that embodies those.
Naturally, we can’t be in that state 24/7. We can, however, consciously choose to be closer to our higher self, each day and no matter what we may be going through at the time.
Higher self = consciousness
We human beings tend to identify with things that are not us and that have nothing to do with us. We identify with our set of beliefs, our society, our job, etc.
But it goes beyond that. We then identify with our own thoughts (or the mind) and our own physical sensations (or the body). Though it’s a different “layer” of identification, it’s still mostly an illusion.
Because our innermost core isn’t body or mind, but pure consciousness and awareness — the higher self.
In a way, the higher self is an expansion of the self because any form of identification, including body or mind, can only be limited, whereas the non-identified self is unlimited.
Higher self = wiser self
There is a fun exercise in psychology and personal development where you write a letter to your old self, which is the person you are right now.
Basically, the future version of yourself — wiser, enlightened, experienced — writes a letter to the person you are right now to offer guidance and give a different perspective.
You can imagine that as your higher self: the self who knows more, who has already seen all the things that are meant to happen in your life, that has a better understanding of your real purpose.
So whenever you feel stuck, whenever you are looking for answers or simply have the desire to grow and discover things, that’s the person you should connect with because that person knows more than you.
Higher self journal prompts
When writing, be spontaneous, and know that any of the following prompts or questions won’t have just one answer, but many.
So each time you go back and read the prompts again, you may come up with a totally different answer, which may indicate a new level of self-awareness.
Also, feel free to experiment with drawings, graphs, colors, or any type of visual representations rather than just words.
1. Who am I?
The idea is to get to that inner core, the real you, your essence. Which is hidden behind all the outer layers.
These layers are your name, your thoughts and beliefs, your past, your job, your personality, etc. All the things we identify with but that are not really us.
By the way, this is the question Buddha would ask himself over and over again on his path to enlightenment. “Who am I?”
2. Had I already fulfilled all my wishes and desires in life, how would I use my time?
If you have absolutely no idea how to answer this, don’t worry. Take your time and keep thinking because eventually it will make sense.
We invest all our time and all our energy going after the things that we want in life, which is great, but what’s left after that?
Had you already experienced literally everything in life, how would you use your time? The answer to that will likely give you an idea of what your true purpose is.
3. If the goal was happiness one, five, ten years from now, what would I do differently?
Your higher self will always guide you toward the highest level of happiness and fulfillment in the future rather than right now.
Not that being happy right now is a bad thing, by any means. The issue is when we trade the opportunity to become the best version of ourselves for instant gratification.
Imagine yourself and your life, say, two years from now, and then visualize all the steps to get there, and “begin with the end in mind”.
4. What eats up my vital energy?
This is one of the prompts you’ll want to go back to over and over again, because the list of things that drain your energy is basically endless.
At first you may think of obvious answers: unhealthy eating habits, lack of exercise and so on.
But then, as you reflect on the prompt, you’ll realize your vital energy also gets drained by toxic people, identification with any of the outer layers (seem prompt one), limiting beliefs, the wrong environment, your fears etc.
5. If I were fully liberated from the fear of death, how would I feel?
And how would you live? How would your life change if you could make peace with the fact that death is inevitable?
Also: if today or tomorrow was the last day of your life, how would you feel? What would be your regrets, what would you be grateful for? What would be your last thoughts?
We don’t like to think about death — we are programmed to fear it. Which is kind of a good thing. At the same time, though, fear of death can prevent us from expressing our true self and living life to the fullest.
6. What are three big lessons I have learned in life? How can I apply them today?
For example, has there been a time in the past where you used your creativity to overcome a seemingly impossible issue?
Has there been a time in which you were precisely in the right place at the right time, yet you didn’t know, and your lack of awareness made you angry or impatient?
Chances are, life has given you plenty of lessons already. And chances are, some of those could be applied to your life right now so you can get closer to your higher self.
7. Who will I become?
This is another interesting, fun prompt which forces you to shift your focus from who you are today to who you are becoming.
See yourself as the person you are today, and your vision can only be limited. See yourself as the person you are becoming and that opens up endless possibilities.
By the way, it doesn’t have to be a decade from now. It could be the person you will be one year from now. Or a month from now. Or even tomorrow.
8. What does complete relaxation feel like?
Stress and anxiety have somehow become the norm in the modern world. It’s almost like we need to be a bit anxious to function.
Which, in itself, can be justified. The issue is when we become so used to stress, anxiety, and tension (low or moderate) that we no longer even notice it, and think it’s our natural and spontaneous state. It’s not.
Think of the highest state of relaxation you have ever experienced (e.g. after a long massage). How did you change? Did your feelings change? Did your thoughts change?
9. What brings me joy, and why?
Write a list of all the things that bring happiness and joy. Anything from the most obvious things, to the strangest/most subjective.
Then reflect on that, and ask why. Why do you feel joy?
You’ll find that most of the time the feeling of joy is a combination of many different elements — gratitude, freedom, fulfillment, mental and physical health, spontaneity, relaxation, confidence and complete absence of fear.
10. If I were to start all over from scratch, what actions would I take?
Your higher self doesn’t care about the person you are right now. It’s all about the person you are meant to become (and having fun during the process).
Because you are always influenced by your current environment and circumstances, whether you are aware of it or not, it can be interesting to try and remove those, in your mind, as an exercise, and see what you’d do differently.
If you were to leave everything behind and start a new life, and be free from all your current limitations (positive and negative), what actions would you take?