First of all, Happy New Year to you! I hope you had a great and refreshing holiday and that you’re fully energized to start 2023.
2022 wasn’t an exactly easy year but it was the year where I started some habits that have stuck with me and one of these habits is keeping a gratitude journal.
A gratitude journal forces you to pay attention to things you need to be grateful for in life and daily dealings. You get to be attuned to the little things that bring pleasure.
You can either have a gratitude journal or jar or both, but they both have the same end goal: help you stay connected and help you show gratitude in life.
Gratitude journals differ from person to person, the most important thing is to pick a day and time that works for you and show up consistently to write in your journal.
Here are some tips to help you through your journey in keeping a gratitude journal:
1. Choose your journal
You can use any notebook or you can get a journal from either Myke & Comfy, Lit Art by AI, Just Journal, or Maocreative. There are so many options it doesn’t have to be fancy. You can also use your phone, iPad, or laptop to go digital.
2. Set aside time for writing…and get comfortable.
Finding time to write in your journal can be difficult at first, but showing up consistently helps you get into the routine of it. I choose nighttime and add it to my nighttime routine and it works perfectly.
Get comfortable once it’s time to write in your journal which can be via sitting at your desk or wearing comfortable clothing such as the Ahava set or the Felly Plisse dress.
It doesn’t have to be daily, it can be weekly or biweekly or monthly; the goal is to write down what you’re thankful for.
3. Start with prompts
This is the easiest way to go if you’re new to it and even if you’ve been in the game for a while, I find that simple prompts help get my gratitude flowing.
- Write about a time you were grateful for something a loved one did for you.
- What are three ways to thank someone without saying “thank you”?
- What is something that makes you unique that you’re grateful for?
- Look out the window, what’s something you’re grateful for outside?
- If you had to give up all of your possessions but three, which three would you keep and why?
- Write a thank you note to yourself.
- Pick a random photo, and write about why you’re grateful for that memory.
- Write about something you’re looking forward to.
- Write about something in your life that you have now that you didn’t have a year ago.
- Reflect on a time you made a mistake and what you learned. What are you grateful for about that learning experience?
- Write about why you’re grateful for your home.
- Think back to the last time you laughed until you cried, and write about it.
- List three things that made you smile this week.
- Think about someone who helped shape the person you are today, and write about what they mean to you.
- Think about a time you were able to help someone else.
- List three people who helped you through a tough situation.
- Name someone who did something nice for you unprompted.
4. Find what works for you
The major thing I love about journaling is that it is liberating and not restrictive. There are no rules, it’s for you only so be free and make it your own. If you love to use washi tapes or doodle, go for it. If you love pictures, add them to your journal. Make it your own.
5. Check in with yourself…regularly
It’s important to know how you feel when you start a new habit or routine. So check in regularly with your self, it could be after the first quarter or after 2 weeks or a month. Think about how this has changed your interactions with people, things and yourself.
Kudos to starting your journey into gratitude journaling. Don’t get discouraged if your jar is not filled up every month or you’re not writing often, starting a new habit takes time. The positive effects of gratitude journaling are endless, take your time and be happy while doing it.
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