[Note – this article about a Gratitude Journal was originally written in 2012, and has been updated several times to keep it relevant and timely!]
In the past, I have discussed why I think keeping a Gratitude Journal is an awesome thing to do. And, it is time to talk about it once again! After all, when something works well, you want to tell people about it! The best part about it is that it fits ANY budget! You can start off not costing anything!
I have been keeping a Gratitude Journal for some time now. Even though it has been in different forms, I have found that I feel empty when I am not using one. Have you ever kept one? While I am asking questions, do you know what one is?
What is a Gratitude Journal?
Anything can pretty much be a Gratitude Journal – an old notebook, a loose-leaf folder, a dedicated journal notebook, an electronic document, or even a collection of scraps of paper! There is no right answer to that it physically is – whatever works best for you and your lifestyle is what you should use.
Now that you have an idea of what it is physically let me tell you what it REALLY is. A gratitude journal will become one of your most treasured items you possess! Within your journal, you will write down all the things you are grateful for.
Your journaling can be something that is structured, such as writing down all the things that occurred in the day for which you are grateful; this writing can be the last thing you do before going to sleep. Or, as something comes into your mind, you can simply write it down. You can write down as many things as you think in one sitting or simply as they come into your thoughts. Your Gratitude Journal should always be readily accessible so when the inspiration hits you, you have the ability to capture the thought!
As you interact during the day, think about what you can journal about – this will often put you in a more gratitude-filled mood. When you are searching for gratitude, you will easily find it. When you spot something, write it down. You can date each entry or just keep it free-flowing. If you want to personalize it, you can include pictures you have taken to help immortalize the moment.
If you ever feel like you have had a miserable day and nothing seems to be going your way, simply open up your Gratitude Journal and start to read what you have written. After reading a few things, your mood and spirit will shift 180 degrees and help put you back into having an Attitude of Gratitude.
If you are skeptical about doing this, try it out for 21 days. Start with a notebook and date each page, starting with today. Commit to writing something for each day. After 21 days, look to see how you are feeling. You will see that by just journaling each day, you will feel like a new person.
Things I have used for my Gratitude Journal:
• Simple spiral notebook
• Loose-leaf binder
• A nice leather binder with exchangeable filler pages (currently in use)
• I have created a document using Google Docs (http://www.google.com/docs) – this was accessible to me no matter where I am (as long as I have an internet connection)
• If you are into electronic solutions, you can use Evernote
• There is an iPhone app – Gratitude Journal
• For my Mac Desktop, I have used Journler (http://journler.com/)
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