Now’s the time to start a gratitude journal.
As we approach the end of a year unlike any other in recent memory, what better time to start a gratitude journal? In the midst of a global pandemic, a divisive presidential election and economic woes that have closed businesses left and right, we could all use some good news.
With a gratitude journal, you can generate good news that’s right in front of you, probably going unnoticed. That has been my situation.
We’ve had a rough year at our house, starting with my daughter’s health. She spent most of the year in the hospital. We missed last Christmas and two Thanksgivings.
Our biggest challenge has been one of facing each day with some small bit of optimism and hope. As I write this, she is back in the hospital facing more surgery. Time to get the gratitude list going.
Start by writing down at least three things every morning for which you are grateful. Writing it down is essential because you can keep it nearby and revisit it throughout the day if you’re feeling stressed, discouraged, or lacking. An example of my morning gratitude list this morning goes something like this:
- I’m grateful my daughter is in an excellent hospital receiving great care.
- I’m grateful that there are highly trained and intelligent doctors with her.
- I’m grateful for the love and support of family and friends.
Those may seem like small things, but without them, it would be difficult to keep a positive mindset going forward. Keep writing three things every day. The more mundane the better. We tend to take for granted things like food, shelter, money enough to get by, sunshine, clean water and having a car to go where we want when we want.
“Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.” — Zig Ziglar
Right now, I’m looking out the window at gray skies and thickening clouds. I’m grateful that we’re going to get some snow soon. The ski resorts need it. It’s good for the economy. See how it works?
Lack of gratitude leads to a scarcity mindset, the feeling that there is never enough. This can keep you feeling wanting. A gratitude journal can help you shift from a scarcity mindset to an abundance mindset (knowing that there’s enough of everything in the world for everyone).
“Gratitude can transform common days into thanksgivings, turn routine jobs into joy, and change ordinary opportunities into blessings.” — William Arthur Ward
Forget the New Year’s Resolutions. That’s down the road. Start a Gratitude Journal now. Make every day a thanksgiving day.