Feel More Happy about Your Life
A Daily Gratitude Journal Boosts Your Happiness
Being thankful develops a positive mindset, especially when we practice it every day. We grow in the direction of what we regularly focus on — daily gratitude improves your well-being dramatically.
A study found that regularly and deliberately acknowledging progress improves our mental health and physical well-being. Additional research shows that being thankful strengthens our relationships, improves sleep, and boosts self-esteem.
A Daily Gratitude Journal is a simple and effective way to acknowledge what to be grateful for about your life, others, and yourself.
1. Set up the Scene
One hour before you go to bed, unplug yourself from TV shows, social media, emails, news, etc. The light of screens reduce the melatonin production — it confuses your body putting your sleep in jeopardy. Also, you want to remove distractions.
Sit down in a comfortable position and take 2–3 deep breaths. Feel how the air flows through your body. Reconnect with your body. Take deeper breaths and relax.
2. Put Your Worries Aside
What worries you? Continue breathing. Reconnect with your day. Remove your distractions. When we worry, we can’t pay attention.
What keeps you anxious or worried? Write it down. Visualize how your worries move from your head to the paper.
3. Identify Positive Memories
What should you be grateful for today? Revisit your entire day and recollect all good moments, no matter how small.
Write down everything that you should feel grateful about life, others, and yourself. The purpose is to finish your day celebrating good stuff instead of complaining about what went wrong.
You finished a project. Your boss congratulated you in front of the entire team. You finally finished reading that book. Your sister called to let you know she’s pregnant. Your best friend is in town and invited you for dinner. Your son did the dishes before you asked him to.
Be specific. Capture the experience, not just the fact. “My wife gave me a gentle massage on my neck while I was preparing dinner for the two of us.”We remember and connect with stories.
4. Reflect & Wrap Up
A gratitude journal is a habit of recognizing the best in us, people, and life. By affirming past and present strengths, successes, and potentials, we acknowledge the positive in life.
Once, you captured all the good news, reflect on the day. What’s the story? Write one sentence to summarize your day using this format: “Today was awesome because…”
5. Repeat & Practice
At first, you might find it hard to remember the ‘good stuff.’ That’s okay — we are wired to remember the bad things. However, in time, your brain will become better and better at creating positive memories.
Practice builds a habit. Focusing on the positive will feel more natural day after day — your list will grow longer and longer before you even notice it. Practicing gratitude will help you develop a more positive outlook. Reflect on how you are improving your ability to deal with your challenges.
Remember, we grow in the direction of what we regularly focus on.