Want to know how to start a gratitude journal? If you have gone through any kind of life hurdle, you may benefit from one. Did you get laid off? Did you get ill? Did you have an argument with a loved one? Did you think you were going to accomplish and complete more life goals before this very moment? This is where starting a gratitude journal comes in.
The list truly does go on and on over what we tend to focus our minds on. Instead of throwing a party for one with the theme being an infinite spiral of negative emotions; try introducing a gratitude framework into your life.
Just as you would brush your teeth, cook yourself a meal, or anything that is now second nature to you – being very intentional about gratitude is one practice you should incorporate into your daily life in order to regain perspective on what truly matters to you. Gratitude journaling, or any kind of journaling for that matter, is a form of self-care that can help you throughout your day. Here’s some basic steps to how you can start capturing your attitude of gratitude:
Stay the course with a cute journal
Getting a cute journal that speaks to you can make all the difference with motivation and consistency with journaling. Below are a few that I found that maybe you might find useful too!
It takes 66 days to form a habit (not 21 days like is often believed). Give it your best shot for two months of your life and start a gratitude journal. See if it makes a difference. I know that it can be hard to remind yourself to do something new, let alone, every day, but to get long-lasting benefits of happiness, positivity, and perspective, try setting aside 5-10 minutes daily to reflect on what you are grateful for. Pro tip: Treat this, as you would a workout or a work meeting – this is a meeting appointment on your calendar that you can’t ditch out on. Schedule it in your calendar if you have to!
Write at the same time
To develop a habit or new addition to your daily routine, it helps to have consistency. Much like any routine, you come to expect certain habits. I know that one of the first things I do each morning is make myself a cup of matcha. As second nature as that has become for me, so has gratitude journaling. Pick out a specific time of day that works for you. I find that setting up my mind with a more positive framework in the morning helps me build upon healthy thoughts throughout the day. I know that others like to wind down the evening by doing a nightly gratitude reflection. There is no right or wrong time to write in your journal. The most important thing is you find a time that works best for your schedule.
If I said I was grateful for having a job, how many people could relate to that? But when I become specific and say that I’m grateful for my job because I’ve been able to build a business for myself, lead a life full of more purpose and passion, and have the schedule flexibility that I desire – this makes the gratitude that much deeper. There is more meaning to the gratitude the more specific you become.
Start with prompts
If journaling is a new practice for you altogether, sometimes starting can be a bit tricky. Try writing to basic prompts, such as what’s below, for starters. These can be a building block into helping you think about your life in a variety of ways.
- What was the best part of your day? Describe in detail.
- Share a time a friend or family member did something thoughtful for you?
- What is an accomplishment in your personal or professional life?
- What do you like most about where you live and why?
- Do you have an able body in some ways? Describe what your body does for you daily.
I hope these tips helped you. I really wanted to create this post to help guide people into writing their positive feelings and experiences down more. I feel like journaling has often times been used mostly to vent or to write out uncertain or negative emotions. What would happen if we changed all of that stressful energy into journals filled with gratitude? Let me know if you have picked up this practice!