What is the secret to psychological well-being? How can we be grateful for the things that have made us who we are? It all comes down to a very simple formula. To stop.
With busy lives and crazy schedules, we rush through life. Opportunities are missed because we forget to find stillness. In order for us to feel grateful, we need to create “stop signs”. How can we make these “stop signs” a daily routine in our lives? With our current global landscape, what a perfect time to hold ourselves accountable. To develop appreciation and joy to our everyday lives. Our favorite way to find a moment of stillness is to invest in a gratitude journal!
Make it yours! It doesn’t have to be fancy or expensive, it just needs to be you. Make it personal. Make it something that you are excited to come back to every day. Get colored pens, collage your favorite pictures or stickers on it. Putting your time and energy into your journal will help build a connection to it. Put it in a spot that you frequent. Maybe a nightstand or your kitchen table. Just a small reminder to jot down what you are grateful for.
Keep it simple! Set realistic expectations for yourself. When you go to write, don’t stress if you don’t know where to start. Remember you don’t need a massive list either. Start with three days a week when you wake up or before you go to bed. Try writing a small list of five things. They can be short and sweet, such as: “I ate today,” “I took a shower,” “I remembered to take deep breaths,” “Someone cares for me.” Just keep it simple.
Don’t be afraid to break the rules! Of course, you are encouraged to write in your gratitude journal every day, but on the days your list feels like a chore, come up with other ways you can show gratitude. Maybe it’s a quick note on your phone, telling a friend your favorite moments of the day, or just mentally saying what you are grateful for. It all counts! Gratitude keeps the mind focused and clear. It allows us to ground ourselves. In a world full of chaos, we can look back at our lists and remember what keeps us going and smiling.