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Starting a Gratitude Journal

Updated: Mar 20, 2022

By Ava Kesler

When life gets hard, it's extremely easy to fall into the slumps of negativity. We can get stuck on one bad thing and suddenly our whole life gets thrown upside down. When this happens, I always try to remind myself of all there is to be grateful for. Keep reading to see how this can transform your life for the better.

Why Make One

The beauty of a gratitude journal is that it is a private outlet for yourself, and only yourself. You don't have to worry about how something sounds or if the order of everything is logical, like you would have to in an essay for example. As a result, your gratitude journal is your opportunity to just express whatever might be making you happy that day in that moment.

Oftentimes one small bad thing can tick us off, and can leave a negative impact on our relationships with loved ones. It's incredibly easy to take out our anger or sadness on others. With a gratitude journal, taking a minute to write something down or to read over what you have already wrote can remind us that there is still joy in life. This is especially helpful when it comes to relationships; writing down all the reasons we are grateful to have someone in our life is a great way to avoid accidentally being rude to loved ones as a way to take out our anger on someone.

A New Perspective

Hardships still happen. Making a gratitude journal should not in any way be done in order to ignore the difficulties of life. It should give you a new motivation to keep going even when these difficulties occur. When life can feel out of your control, remembering the little things can help inspire you strive to improve any part of your life you want to change for the better, while also cheering you up.

Choosing Your Journal

There are a variety of journals available online and in stores that are made just for this purpose, often with the added bonus of prompts to write your goals and track your health.

I recommend finding an old journal you might already have and making it your own, like a casual bullet journal. This way there is more room for creative freedom, and it also gives you the opportunity to see that there are little moments in life to be grateful for that don't require a whole production. Taking a journal you already have is a symbolic way of telling yourself that there is always something in life to be grateful for.

Writing in Your Journal

When and how you write in your grateful journal is up to you. There should be some combination of using it as an emotional outlet in addition to as a past time. This ensures that finding joy in the little things becomes a natural habit, while also serving as an emotional outlet.

Let us know if you try a gratitude journal and how it helps you!

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