Journaling Prompts for Coping with Quarantine

journaling prompts for coping with quarantine, quarantine journal prompts

Dear Wonderful, Creative You:

One of the things I’ve thought a lot about since the start of the pandemic is how we not only cope, but thrive amidst difficulty.

Some folks are in survival mode because of their family, job issues, mental health issues, or other circumstances. If you are one of those folks who is in survival mode, then you may want to skip this whole section of the post, and instead, gift yourself some deep breaths. I thank you for all you are doing for your community. You’ll find this week’s slow drawing party at the bottom of this post.

Because I’m lucky enough to have my head well above water, I think there’s a way to honor my stress, grief, and difficulty, while also looking for the opportunities that this situation offers.

Some things are just not possible right now, and that really hurts. I miss making medical appointments without needing to weigh the risk, or popping into grocery store without thinking about it. I miss going on dates with my husband, eating in restaurants, having dinner parties inside, and travel. I miss hugging my friends and family.

Throughout this time, I try to honor my stress, while also periodically searching my heart for to ask what else might feed me emotionally. We’ve got at least several more months of this situation, and it seems to me that waiting is a very unpleasant state.

My Personal Takeaways:

+ Get outside most days and look, listen and feel slowly, purposefully, letting nature fill me up (and inspire my art.)

+ Give back. My slow drawing workshops are my way of offering solace and helping you to build your art practice and confidence. This is turn gives me purpose and meaning.

Don’t let cold get in the way of socializing. I was lucky enough to be able to buy an additional outdoor heater for our porch. We dress for snow and put a sleeping bag over our legs. It’s been a warmish winter here, most days being in 23 – 42 F so far. (I acknowledge and am grateful for all these advantages.)

Given this, I’ve hosted socially distanced outdoor Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Year’s for my adult step kids, plus having a two friends over on the porch for drinks periodically. These small gatherings are surprisingly fun and adventurous.

On Thanksgiving, for example, we made Day After Thanksgiving sandwiches on the grill instead of the usual spread. It was meaningful because it’s a sandwich we eat every year on vacation in the summer, while watching the sun set over Cadillac Mountain in Maine. It’s fun to overcome these obstacles and still be able to connect with friends and family.

We’ve also done a lot more hiking than usual. Between our own family outings, and needing safe outdoor playdates for my son, we have also discovered a huge number of trails and nature preserves that we’d never before visited, which has been a treasure.

Journaling Prompt: Quarantine Complaints

If it feels good for you, make a list of all your complaints, stressors, and grief. I know it’s a lot, so if it feels like this will only bring you down, skip this step and move onto the next prompt.

Journaling Prompt: Quarantine Opportunities

If it feels good for you, you might journal a bit about the opportunities of this time. If this doesn’t feel nourishing right now, you can honor that.

  1. What has been good about quarantine? Personally? At work?
  2. What have you done differently in quarantine that you enjoy?
  3. What creative solutions are friends and family using to take advantage of this time?
  4. What are the opportunities that quarantine is offering that you are not making the most of currently? What would be 2 baby steps to get you closer?

This week’s Slow Drawing Party: Woodland

Each week I host a slow drawing party on Facebook, and with a replay on my site for 48 hours. I’d love to have you join me:

Live Facebook RSVP: Join live on Facebook WEDNESDAY, at 1 pm EST (New York time) ​​

*For folks looking for a way to support me in presenting these workshops, I am accepting donations here:

Creatively Yours,



  1. Laurel Summers

    I don’t know if I will be home to take part in the slow drawing party (more likely I can get the benefit from the replay), and I don’t often comment on your emails.

    But I want to let you know that the whole focus of SLOW art has become increasingly more important to me and the cadence and pace of your online sharing has been a real encouragement in that direction. THANK YOU for what you send out into ‘cyberspace’ with faith that it will reach many who need the encouragement and opportunity.

    You are a blessing.

    • Amy Maricle

      Laurel – I SO appreciate your comment and kind words. It means so much to me to know that I’m making a difference right now in your well being overall, as in your art. Big hugs!

  2. Judy

    This rainy day, a buck and 2 does were nibbling on the brush at the back of our yard. I feel so grateful for this touch of nature.

    • Amy Maricle

      What a beautiful image, indeed. It’s so good to be able to “ground” this way. It’s elemental for me this year more than ever, and I can see many of us are on the same page. xo

  3. Phyllis Statham

    I wasn’t able to participate last week, but plan to do so tomorrow 3 Feb. Is there a supply list provided somewhere, so I can be prepared when the drawing party starts?
    Looking forward to slow dances with papayas.
    Thank you very much.

    • Amy Maricle

      HI Phyllis!

      I’m so glad you’ll be joining in today! The supply list is the same every week and is listed on the event and also on the replay page. It’s always a micron drawing pen and watercolor paper cut in small pieces, about 3 x 4, and sometimes watercolors and a small round brush.


  4. Kim Allen

    Amy – I have been so depressed , at the darkest time of my life. I quit my nursing career after 42 years of working in the operating room as a surgery RN, because the care of dying patients was overwhelming-especially when so many people are denying its existence. I haven’t had the energy to take one of your free classes yet – but I am buoyed by your writing and your words have carried me… I thank you from the bottom of my heart. KNOW -that in this terrible time – you have truly helped at least this one human being. Kimberly Allen BSN,RN,CNOR

    • Amy Maricle

      Oh Kimberly, I feel that deep well. I honor that feeling and your humanity and all you’ve done for so many. A good nurse is invaluable. I’m glad you are taking some time for your own healing. It means SO MUCH to me to know that I have helped. And only you know exactly what you need right now. I don’t know if I read you right, but sometimes a direct invitation to join can help give us the nudge to do something we want to do. If it feels right, I would love to have you at the live drawing today. You’ll find it here. Whatever you do with your day – I wish you many moments of light.

  5. jakki g

    Amy, for many reasons I have not been able to join you in your recent slow drawing classes. Will you be packaging them up like you did for the first set? I am finding comfort in working through those now that I have the time and life is not quite as overwhelming. Buying the set was most definitely a great investment and I’m so glad I did it.

    Thank you for your classes, your welcoming, non-judgmental embrace is, for me, so very important. I judge myself harshly at times and have little support at home; your classes validate the new-found joy I get in making art.

    • Amy Maricle

      HI Jakki: I know a lot of us judge ourselves harshly and it’s so good to know I’ve been able to help with that. I will indeed be creating some bundles of classes soon. Stay tuned! XO


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