For as long as I can remember, I held onto a journal. Not the kind you play mash in and hide the key under your pillow thinking no one will find it, but an inconspicuous notebook that went everywhere with me so that in times of fear, anger, happiness and even sadness I had the opportunity to let it out. But starting a new journey with a gratitude journal earlier this year has sincerely changed the way I navigate my everyday life. Not only does it bring me joy to look back on some really great and inspiring details of my day to day but at the end of this year, I can simply reflect on what I can do to increase these feelings of happiness instead of forcing the daunting reminders of all that went wrong this year to the forefront with meaningless New Year resolutions.
Now while it took me a minute to get into the habit of utilizing it every, single day, it became second nature after about two weeks and is now a crucial part of my everyday routine. Here are some of the advantages that I experience personally through utilizing my gratitude journal.
1. It Reduces My Stress Level Significantly – I realize that when I am most grateful that not only do I send out good vibrations to others, but I carry myself differently and take care of myself better. As a result, my physical health has improved significantly also. Little things that would usually affect my entire mood and potentially steal an entire day from me, don’t sit in my mind for more than 60 seconds before I am filtering for a silver lining. This has become so much easier in the last few months!
2. I Don’t Lose Any Sleep – Outside of my growing tummy, there is nothing that causes me to lose sleep over the days bullshit. My primary writing times are as soon as I wake up and begin steeping my morning tea and right before I hit the pillow at night allowing me to never go to sleep angry or pondering on worries that would usually keep me up at night and never wake up dreading the day ahead.
3. My Self-Esteem Never Takes a Beating – This is an important one for me. In a world full of crabs in a barrel, keeping this journal allows me to be in the present with who I am, what I am doing and happy with where I am in all forms. I literally can look to my left and my right and find no social comparison to where I am in my life because I am grateful for all that I am and that I have.
4. My Positivity Has Increased – My husband and I always joke about how much we balance each other out because his positivity would literally annoy me to no end because I was always thinking of the “what if?”. But with expressing gratitude and utilizing my journal, I noticed how much more positive I have been. Writing these things down allows them to be a lot me concrete to me; it makes things more positively realistic so that it weaves well into my everyday life and provides the little devil hanging over myshoulder A LOT less power, if any at all!
5. Lastly. HAPPINESS! – Silver linings, feeling positive emotions and the continuation of happy thoughts that inspire you and keep you going create this blissful domino effect in your life. It leads to a healthier mind and body, healthier and more positive relationships with yourself and others and allows you to savor great moments in your everyday life without hesitation or stress. Live happier.
I hope this encourages others to begin to write down what they are grateful for daily. It truly is rewarding and if you’re looking for a New Year resolution, make it a smooth transition and start expressing your gratitude early!