What Is A Gratitude Journal? ~ And a link to download a Gratitude Journal cover
Before I answer the question ‘What is a gratitude journal?’ I would like us to spend a few minutes on what Gratitude actually is.
Gratitude originates from the Latinword ‘gratus’ which means thankful. Gratitude is a feeling or emotion of being grateful and appreciative.
Gratitude is the appreciation of the good things we have in life. It is focusing on what we have rather than what we don’t have and want.
We can (and should!) always ask for more in life to reach our full potential. While doing this, it is important though not to forget about what we already have and are grateful for.
Accomplishing the ‘Art of Gratitude’ rather than constantly concentrating on the things we don’t have, strengthens the power of optimism and transformation in our lives.
You might have read some of my Affirmation pages, where we focus on welcoming more positivity into our lives, transforming and changing our lives to the better, becoming self-empowered while achieving our desired goals and reaching our full potential.
What can I be grateful for?
There are many things in life that you can be grateful for. You can be grateful for receiving a gift and then express your appreciation. The type of gratitude that I would like to focus on today is being grateful for what you and I have in all aspects of life, not just only the physical plane.
Take the time to sit down for a few minutes a day and contemplate the good things you have in life and that you are grateful for.
These can be as ‘simple’ as being able to
- see and treasure beauty
- hear music and laughter
- the ability to be able to laugh and be happy
- smell roses – when was the last time you stopped and smelled a flower?
- taste delicious and healthy food
- the fact that you have enough money to buy food every day
- fresh drinking water
- have a loving family and friends
- being healthy
- access to internet and being able to research and spend time on your personal empowerment
- reading and taking time out of your busy schedule
- run, walk, dance, drive a car
- drinking a hot cup of tea on a cold day
- viewing the beautiful spring rain
- being able to treat yourself at times whether it is going out for dinner with a good friend, buying something you wanted for a while or going on a long-desired and deserved holiday
I am sure you will come up with many more blessings in your life.
Take a minute or two now and think about what you are grateful for in your life.
Write them down and while you are doing this, can I ask you a question? How are you feeling? How did you feel before reading this today about gratitude? Are you feeling a little different now? Maybe a little happier or calmer? I do hope so.
Gratitude is an empowering personality trait to develop and maintain. As we focus on gratitude for the blessings that we have, we stop taking them for granted. Marcus Tullius Cicero, a Roman philosopher once wrote, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.”
Each day, writing down at least three things that we are grateful for, is a wonderful way to nurture this attitude.
Expressing our gratitude to friends, our family or God, is an empowering way to acquire to live an abundance of gratitude, even at stressful or hectic times that are part of our daily or weekly schedules.
Mental attitude of appreciation
You can use this mental attitude of appreciation to change your focus and ultimately any situation during your day and I encourage you to give it a try.
Even though your circumstances might not alter, your mood and attitude will and you will instantly feel better, happier and more balanced. This positive change in feeling shows you that you have been successful in altering your thoughts and focus at that given time.
I also encourage you to choose a designated time every single day to sit down, quieten your mind, be with yourself and focus on what you are grateful for. Do this for a month and notice the changes.
Spending around 10 minutes at the start or end of each day writing down what I am grateful for shifts my mindset and transforms my life on a daily basis.
I do encourage you to do this in the morning as it will energize you and positively carry you through the day. You will notice that you are more balanced, happier and relaxed when starting your day this way; rather than getting up, rushing to get ready, having breakfast on the go and getting upset about the traffic in the mornings.
But now I would like to come back to our initial question of what a Gratitude Journal is.
A Gratitude Journal is helping us to practice the Art of Gratitude on a daily basis.
Take time out of your busy schedule, focus on what you are grateful for and actually write these down in your Gratitude Journal.
I suggest doing this once a day for at least 30 days to shift your focus and be encouraged to continue with this practice after the first month.
However, if you are looking for a slight change in routine, you might like to sit down once or twice a week and write in your gratitude journal. It can be as short or as long as you like.
I also encourage you to take time to go back to the previous pages or sentences in your Gratitude Journal at least once a month. This will truly show all the blessings you have in your life.
Also, when feeling discouraged or a little down at times, why not take your Gratitude Journal,have a read and I do hope that this will make you feel better.
As always, I am happy to hear from you if you have any questions or feedback. Let me know how the ‘Art of practicing Gratitude’ is transforming your life!
My next post will focus more on the benefits of Gratitude, different ways we can express Gratitude and more ideas for what we can write in our Gratitude Journals in case we are running short of inspirations at any stage. We will also look into creating a ‘Gratitude Jar’ including instructions and download material for you to create your own one. So stay tuned!
P.S. If you are looking for a simple way to personalise your Gratitude Journal, why not click here and download one of my Gratitude Journal covers.
This is a beautiful post and is giving me a beautiful little daily exercise to do, to fully appreciate my life and not forget my blessings.
It’s been years since I’ve kept a diary. Mostly because I end up losing interest in recording the events of my day or week.
But taking just 10 minutes of my time to just reflect on what I should be grateful for today, I can see will be an energising and motivating daily exercise. And penning them in a journal, will indeed make me recall my blessings.
Pardon me if it seems like I am repeating back to you what you’ve just said. Rather, I’m hoping it will show you a little of what I’ve just grasped in reading your article. And I found it beautiful, motivating and effortless to do. A blessing to be grateful for.
Thank you for the guidance.
Hi Cath, thank you for your time reading and sharing this. I am glad this article has been helpful and inspired you to get back into journaling. I have noticed that keeping a Gratitude Journal is different to writing in a diary. Have you considered keeping two separate notebooks for this? Thank you again for your comment. I wish you well, Edith
Yes for sure, and as they say: “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it”
I just want to add the spiritual meaning of Gratitude: Gratitude is the act of feeling and communicating esteem for the others, circumstances and all materials that we have in our lives. It allows us to cherish our present in ways that make us feel in abundance rather than disadvantaged. As a result, we become more motivated, less depressed and, ultimately, better off.
Hi Karim, thank you so much for sharing this. Yes, it is so true and important to live in the present moment. Thank you! Edith
The great article and useful tips. It’s really a good idea to write down what you’re grateful for. Maybe I’ve already done something like this, but it’s only been in thought. Goodness and gratitude are in every person, but we don’t see it or even shy about it. Thanks for this article, I will certainly try to follow your recommendations and fix it on the paper or in my iPhone notes.
Hi Andrejs, thank you for reading and commenting! Yes, that is so true. I am glad you have been able to take something with you from this post – and what a good idea to use today’s technology to help with gratitude. Thank you, Edith
Great post and good info.
As I understood right, gratitude can offer you a lot of good things, such as stress relieve and more.
I never stood still with it, as indeed, you have a lot of things around of you that you should be grateful for.
The roses, nature, your dog and much more.
This is a very inspiring post, and I’m going to share it.
Thanks a lot !
Hi Emmanuel, thank you for reading and sharing this post. I am glad you have been able to find this useful. Thank you! Edith
Great writeup. Waking up in the morning is always my first gratitude of the day and I always link it up with the level of my spirituality. Meditation follows during which I go deeper in thoughts and more reason for gratitude. Never has it occurred to me to write it down and make a list out of it. From now am gonna find brand new gratitude I’ve looked past and make huge list out of it.
Hi Ayodeji, thank you so much for reading and sharing this. Starting off the day with gratitude and meditation is amazing! I am glad you have been able to take something new with you from this post. I am sure your list will be endless. All the best! Edith
Thank you very much fur this great article,i think I am a victim of ungratefulness, I focus more on things I don’t have rather than what I have, your post has really taught me the benefits of giving thanks and I feel that is essential in our everyday life. Thank you for this.
Hi Clement, thank you for your time reading my post and for your comment. It is so easy to focus on things we want, rather than being appreciative for all the blessing we have in our lives. I have to regularly remind myself of this, too, and I have found that a Gratitude Journal helps me with this. Wishing you all the best. Thank you, Edith