Are you wondering what all the hum is about gratitude journaling? Want to get into making a gratitude journal of your own? What even is gratitude journaling?
Gratitude journaling is nothing more than a practice for chronicling what you are grateful for. It is a way to see the good even in the worst of things.
So, today we will be exploring some key prompts from which you can jump into your own gratitude practice. Away we go!
1. Write About A Person
Being a gratitude journal, this has to be a person for whom you feel grateful. This is an arena for positive emotion. Think about all the people in your life who you are lucky to know and let those positive emotions spill over one person in particular.
Detail why you are grateful for this person in as much detail as possible, reflecting the positive psychology of gratitude journals onto them and their impact on your life, expressing gratitude when perhaps you need to do so most.
2. Skills & Abilities
Practicing gratitude is often about focusing your attention inward. Instead of expressing gratitude for others, why not learn how to keep a journal to express gratitude for yourself and your own abilities?
Such positive reinforcement has been shown to increase mental health considerably, especially when daily gratitude practice is engaged with.
It does not take much to practice gratitude each day, and what better place to start than with your own skills and abilities? Write about the parts of yourself that you are grateful for, your own abilities, and skills that you feel gifted to have been imparted with. This can be both grounding and enhance life satisfaction.
We can even be thankful for the challenges we face. Though a large part of ourselves might be screaming for mercy and not wanting to face these challenges, there is a part of us that, even if only in the future, will be thankful to have been tested in this way.
As before, write it down and, in doing so, enhance your gratitude practices. Open yourself up to more positive emotions by keeping a gratitude journal in this way that allows you to see the good even in the so-called bad. You will not be able to help but emit positivity in your daily life.
4. Then and Now
Try thinking about where you were a year ago and where you are now. What changes are you most thankful for? Perhaps your physical health has improved thanks to your own hard work at it, or maybe you are feeling happier within yourself. This is one of the premier self-care journaling ideas around.
Practising gratitude in your own journal like so will not only allow you to chronicle all these feelings but will also give you something to refer to when you are feeling especially in need of guidance and help. Time to feel thankful for your own work and progress.
5. Activities & Hobbies
Surely you have at least a few activities in your life that you get up to on a regular basis that you simply would not be able to do without. Return the favor and do them a service by including them in your daily practice.
Indeed, you could write about one thing in immense detail, doing one per day until you are feeling embalmed in more positive things. If you are somewhat averse to gratitude journaling, then starting with the obvious positives is a great way of adding gratitude to your everyday life.
6. The Body
In the western world today, it can be all too easy to beat ourselves up about the way we look. The modern media conglomerates seem hell-bent on making us feel bad that we do not look like the faces on the front of magazines or the ever-scrolling tide of social media.
Thankfully, we can use a leather journal like this to turn our attention to nurturing our physical well-being. Simply write about some of the parts of your body that you are grateful for and why. Taking a moment to stop and reflect on what makes you so good can only do you a world of good.
7. Where You Live
If you are a city slicker who does not happen to like being a city slicker, then it can be easy to get into the habit of begrudging where you live.
When you live for a while in one city and, although it was initially very exciting, you may quickly find yourself insulting the place you were living. And yet, big cities afford so many opportunities for experience and interaction that it at least matches (if not totally outweighs) all the negatives.
Try to do the same for where you live and see what comes up.
As much as we might try to fight it, material things are not going anywhere. Especially in this hyper-fast capitalist western society, materiality is of the utmost importance and, while we should not place all our belief in it, we should at least be grateful for the things we do have.
No doubt you have some prized possessions that you simply could not do without. Try listing them out while also chronicling their pointed relevance to you. This can be especially useful if you have lost such an item - in this way you can achieve some sort of closure with it before moving on entirely.
Where would we be in our lives without the music that fills our ears and delights our senses? For many, music is the fuel that simply cannot be done without.
So, why not detail your favorite music and what it means to you? These choices do not have to be in any particular order - nor do they have to be demarcated by release (album, EP, etc). Simply a list of music that means a whole bunch to you can help you feel good when things are going bad.
If, indeed, you are a city slicker, then depending on the city that you are slicking, you might not get too much exposure to nature. Even still, it can be a thoroughly valuable exercise to detail the kinds of nature that most excite you - who knows, maybe it will inspire you to get out there and see some more.
Start small and then proceed to get larger until, eventually, you have the whole world in your sights.
So, there you have it! Hopefully, you have now found a way into developing your own gratitude practice. Keep at it and try to honor your own needs as much as possible.
FAQs Gratitude Journaling
What do you write in a grateful journal?
You can write whatever you like in such a journal, though the whole point is to detail things that you are grateful for. This is best illustrated by your own experiments. For the best experience, you should choose the topics yourself and go from there - you know what you need from the journal. A good place to start is to simply chronicle abstract things that you are grateful for without any prerogative and then to feel out from there what you think you most need to express gratitude for.
What does gratitude journaling mean?
Gratitude journaling is a type of journaling that is particularly aimed at expressing gratitude for the things around us. Such an exercise has been shown to improve mental health, allowing you to see the good even in the bad. Many prompts for gratitude journaling involve taking something that is otherwise bad and trying to find the good in it. This is an outlook that is then, theoretically, translated to other aspects of your life. Even its gravest naysayers have eventually had to concede that it can provide some real health benefits even in the abstract.