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Reflectly's easygoing daily journaling

Editor’s note: This article is about Reflectly’s free version, which contains friendly microcopy and enjoyable interactions. Unfortunately, we have concerns surrounding Reflectly Premium’s 7-day trial and paid service, as many user reviews complain of dark patterns.

Keeping a daily journal is helpful for many people and can become a keystone habit that affects every facet of life. A journal gives you the chance to collect your thoughts and desires on your own terms without worrying about judgment or opinion.

Unfortunately, many of us struggle to find the time and motivation to maintain a daily journal. That's the problem that Reflectly aims to solve with their intelligent journaling app. Billed as a personal mental health companion, Reflectly helps you add structure to your journaling and reflect on your daily thoughts and problems.

Reflectly's AI-powered mobile app is designed to make journaling as easy as possible, eliminating many common barriers to everyday journaling and reflection. Using targeted prompts that work in sequence, users are guided through each step of the journaling process, eliminating the blank-page syndrome that often prevents people from turning journaling into a regular habit.

After signing up, users are prompted to add today's story straight away.

The app breaks down the journaling process into multiple small and easy-to-complete steps.

First, users are prompted to slide the bar to select how their day is going. Friendly animated graphics make it easy for users to match their feelings within the app.

Next, users are prompted to narrow down their feelings further, selecting from a number of reasons why they might be feeling the way they do. While the default reasons provided cover the majority of situations, users can also enter a custom reason.

After choosing a reason, users are asked whether they'd like to elaborate on what happened. Making this step optional is important—it helps users feel like they're in control of how much information they provide.

After elaborating on how they feel about what happened during the day, users can give an overview of how they felt throughout the day, once again selecting from a range of default feelings using an animated slider.

Completing the day's story leads users to a screen that congratulates them and lets them name the day's entry. The CTA button entices users with the reward of a “daily reflection” for completing their entry. In case anything was forgotten, users also have the option of returning to add more detail to their journal entry.

The daily reflection on the following screen encourages users to be more mindful, asking a thought-provoking question and presenting an additional prompt to answer that question in the app.

Finally, after completing their journal entry and their daily reflection, users are again congratulated and rewarded with an additional audio reflection, along with an upsell prompt to subscribe to Reflectly's Premium service.

Why this is Really Good UX:

  • By breaking down the open-ended task of daily journaling into multiple easy-to-complete steps, Reflectly alleviates the most common barrier many people face with regular journaling and reflection, increasing the chances they will make it part of their daily habit.
  • Reflectly's friendly microcopy and animations provide continuous encouragement to users throughout the journaling process, congratulating them on their progress and helping them feel like the effort of journaling is worthwhile.
  • The final upsell prompt to subscribe to the Premium service is integrated into the journaling flow, at the exact moment that users have experienced the value of the app and are ready to access further content. It is also possible continue using the free version of the service without upgrading.

Screenshots captured on 12/7/18