Interoceptive journaling is a mindfulness practice that involves recording and reflecting upon one’s own bodily sensations. It’s an intentional way of tuning into the often subtle signals our bodies send us, ranging from hunger pangs and heartbeats to flutters of anxiety in the stomach or warm waves of contentment.
By deliberately writing about these internal signals, you can improve your interoceptive awareness and strengthen the bond between mind and body. By helping you recognize and understand your bodily signals, this method can help you enhance your emotional regulation, self-awareness, and overall well-being.
Interoceptive journaling can be practiced through free-flow writing. If you’d prefer to follow some guided prompts, I’ve read many articles about interoception and developed the following eight questions to get you started.
- How does my body feel right now, in this moment? Describe your bodily sensations in as much detail as possible. Are there any tingling, warmth, or cool sensations anywhere in your body?
- Where in my body do I feel the most tension or discomfort? Can I associate this feeling with a particular event or emotion from today?
- Do I feel any sensations of hunger or fullness? If so, where do I feel it, and how intense is it?
- How is my breath? Is it shallow or deep, fast or slow? Can I feel it more prominently in my chest, throat, or abdomen?
- Can I detect my heartbeat without touching my chest or wrist? If so, what does it feel like?
- Does my body feel heavy or light? Can I connect this feeling to something I’ve ingested or a particular activity?
- How did physical activity (or lack thereof) impact my bodily sensations today? Are there parts of my body that feel sore?
- Have I noticed any recurring bodily sensations throughout the day or week? If so, can I identify any patterns or triggers?
Like many other mindfulness practices, interoceptive journaling is most effective when done regularly. When you do this practice every day, you get more out of it and can better understand and connect with your inner states.
Interoceptive journaling can be easily included as part of any mindfulness practice, whether you’re just starting out or have been practicing for some time. Just a few minutes a day focusing on your sixth sense can strengthen your awareness of and improve your response to your body’s signals, leading to greater overall well-being.
This list of prompts is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution ShareAlike 4.0 International License, which means you can feel free to copy and distribute this list of questions as long as you attribute it and link back to this page.