How to create and start a Gratitude Journal

There has been a lot of buzz lately about gratitude journals and there are many options out there where you can buy a gratitude journal, but for me personally I feel better using one that I create for myself. It's more personal, it is also created in a way that works especially for me and my needs. I am going to share how I approached starting and creating my own gratitude journals, but know that you can add or subtract anything that I share here to make it your own. This is just a basic guide for those who are unsure of where to start.

Step One: Find a notebook or journal to use

Now you can go out and get just a basic cheap notebook, that is really all I started with myself, or you can look around at actual journals and find one that is beautiful and fun and speaks to you from its appearance. Which ever route you choose is great because it's what is right for you.

If you went with a basic notebook now is the time to make it personalized for you. Draw on the cover, color it, put stickers on it, anything that resonates with you or makes you feel inspired go with that whatever it may look like. It's also fun to find different colored pens and markers to use when writing in your journal as well, or you can use whatever writing utensil you like. You can create it to be as simple or elaborate as you wish. Just remember to have fun with it and choose things that make you feel good when you see them or use them.

Step Two: Decide What to Write

Many people keep journals for a variety of reasons and for multiple different things. Obviously this post is geared around gratitude so for many of you the main thing you will write in your journal is a list of things you are grateful for that day. But you can take it further and do a process that I created for myself, or create your own. Here is what I like to do for my journal:

Feelings: I will write out all the feelings the felt that day. Good or bad, or blah, anything in between, I write down all the feelings I can remember experiencing that day.

Why do I do this? Mainly to acknowledge those feelings and to express them fully, when perhaps I may not have been able to in the moment. So many of us have gotten away from our feelings, don't even notice how we are feeling through out the day or why we feel those feelings. So this is a great practice to get in touch with your inner self and your feelings. To make note of different experiences you had through out your day and how those experiences made you feel.

Accomplishments: Next I will write all the things I accomplished that day. Big or small doesn't matter. The important thing here is to acknowledge yourself and your accomplishments. Even as simple as getting out of bed, taking a shower, eating breakfast, and getting fully dressed. For me some days those are great accomplishments and I express them in my journal. Other days it might look something like this: I worked my full shift, I went for a walk, I took my dog on a hike, I paid my bills, went grocery shopping, ect. Do you see where I am going with this here? It really is simple, you don't have to over think it. You will be surprised at the end of it when you see all these accomplishments at the end of your day. It makes you feel good to see all the things you've done in one day and know that you can and will do more as the days go on.

Gratitude: Last, but not least, I have gratitude. For me it makes it so much easier to find things to be grateful for when you first see all the feelings you felt that day and all the things you accomplished. It reflects so many wonderful, yet simple at times, things to be grateful for. I will then list at least five things I am grateful for that day, some days I will list more, but I would say a minimum of five is best. Then look back and reflect on what a great day you had, knowing that another one is just around the corner when you wake in the morning.

For me gratitude journals have gotten me closer to myself, they have helped me to see the good things in life no matter how small or simple, and to be more positive with my outlook on life. Getting to be in the habit of this will eventually become second nature and you will no longer have to write it down in a journal to acknowledge it, though you still can if you choose. I rarely write in a journal anymore, though I did this practice for years, I now just acknowledge my feelings in the moment, I express my gratitude while I am feeling it, and notice more of the blessings in my life as they are happening and no longer have to reflect later to realized what a beautiful amazing world I live in. It is now a part of me and how I live my life. It is such a beautiful practice and I hope that some of you choose to pick it up for yourselves.

Have any of you created a gratitude journal?

Please share pictures of them below.

What things do you like to write that I haven't mentioned?

Please share.

Thank you all.

Blessings beautiful souls.

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