If you want to be happier, and healthier and develop an optimistic mindset, learning how to start a gratitude journal is the best practical exercise for you.
A Gratitude Journal is a logbook that serves as a storage for everything you are grateful for each and every day of your life.
With a quick search online, you will find dozens of articles on the topic. However, most of them are convoluted hence difficult to follow.
We, on the other hand, will provide you with a simple step-by-step process on how to start a gratitude journal excluding all the fluff.
Let’s get started!
Step 1: Be Thankful
This is the first step in creating a gratitude journal.
To start symbolizing your gratitude on paper, you should first take a mental inventory of your ideas.
We recommend you utilize the 100% rule and go all out. Change your identity from an ungrateful person to a grateful person and soon you will find thousands of things in your life you can be grateful for.
And just like any other skill, the more you practice being grateful, the better you get at it.
Step 2: Write Down The Things You Are Grateful For
After you have cognitively reminded yourself of the things you are grateful for, it is now time to list them out. Do not repeat the same information twice and be as concise as possible to avoid ambiguity.
Create a bullet list of all the things you are thankful for either in a physical or digital journal.
Step 3: Do A Deep Dive Into The Things Are Thankful For
Now do a deep analysis of each of the key things you are grateful for. Avoid the urge to be vague. Be specific with your wording and write out how you feel about each of them. It will make the idea more concrete.
The more concrete, the greater the sense of gratitude you will feel towards those listed items.
Step 4: Look For More Things To Be Grateful For
There are obviously more things you can be grateful for.
Take, for example, the fact that you have a home to sleep in, early morning breakfast, and even a job to help pay the bills.
Not many people have such luxuries.
Step 5: Look For People In Your Life You Are Grateful For
No matter what you have people in your life. It could be your friends, family, and work colleagues. Your parents, siblings, etc. are examples of people you can express your gratitude for.
List out in your journal reasons why you are thankful for having them in your life. You will feel more love and gratitude towards them.
After that, find people you are not on good terms with and through the same process. It might prove arduous but that is what makes it healthy.
The more toxic feeling you kick out of your life the better.
Step 6: Be Grateful For the Skillset You Have
Now focus on yourself and go through in your mind all the skills you take for granted. Your ability to speak, see, hear, etc. are skills many people in the world have never experienced before. Be grateful for them.
Then, jump on to skills you have acquired over the years. Maybe you have learned how to code, write stories, weld and even this current skill of journaling are abilities beyond the scope of millions of people.
Step 7: Look For Specific Events Within Your Life
Many are the situations in your life you feel really thankful for.
It could be as simple as your first kiss, your first car or the first day you entered into the workforce.
Your experience might be different. However, they are relevant aspects of your life that can help you grow a grateful mindset.
The act of journaling down your thoughts of things you are grateful for will improve every area of your life. You will never be disappointed.
In case, you have not journaled before, try our guide on how to journal for complete beginners. Even if you won’t take it on as a habit, try it as a hobby.