I have kept a journal, off and on for 25 years.
(Because, you know, #FEELINGS. I have them
sometimes. (LOTS OF TIMES.)
And sometimes those feelings bounce around my head for too long. They don’t serve me or solve whatever riddle that occupies my brain space.
That’s why the process of writing serves as a release. Once I have words on paper, I tend to gain perspective. I can look down and see what I’ve been thinking. Often, it gives me clarity.
Holidays are a time when many of us pause, and I especially seek that clarity. And in 2020 with a pandemic, racial injustice, and so much suffering on top of it, journaling has been even more important.
Which is why my entry today was about gratitude, and what I feel grateful for.
Gratitude has been written about extensively these past years, and for good reason: Gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness, according to research from Harvard University Medical School.
“Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.”Harvard University Medical School Research
So, if you are feeling those seasonal blues or are looking for fortitude and strength in your daily life, consider starting a gratitude journal practice of your own. Here’s how:
Write down (or say out loud, or pray, or however you want to express it) what you are grateful for. The method isn’t as important as the intentionality of it.
What’s key is to stop whatever you are doing and give it your full attention. Here are a few prompts to get you started:
Gratitude Journal Prompts:
- Write about a friend you are grateful for.
- Write about a family member you are grateful for.
- What is a mistake or pain that you are grateful for (yes, really!)
- Write about a happy memory.
- A simple pleasure.
- Something you are looking forward to.
- Something you’ve done that has helped others.
- Something someone did that helped you.
- A tradition that you value
- And on, and on and on.
I know that whenever I offer these types of gratitude, my mood changes. I feel a noticeable lift. And if you start this practice, I hope you find these benefits, too.
One thing I’m incredibly grateful for is to be part of the BIGFOOT HEALTH team, and to be present with you all as a community, as we seek to live our best lives.
Yours in gratitude,