At a time in our lives where everything in the world is scary and unpredictable, World Gratitude Day on 21 September seems like a good time to stop and take stock of all the things in our life that make our days brighter.
It’s no secret that people who practice gratitude regularly are happier, sleep better and express higher levels of compassion and empathy. And gratitude doesn’t have to be reserved for just the big things either!
Studies show that keeping a gratitude journal of all the small things can increase your overall wellbeing and life satisfaction. This can be easier said than done though… so here are some tips for keeping up with your journaling…
- Freshen it up Writing something like ‘I am grateful for my family’, whilst most likely true, doesn’t keep your brain on alert for new moments to be grateful for. Switch it up, and be specific with your gratitude.
- Be realistic When we want to achieve a goal, using mental contrasting — being optimistic about the benefits of a new habit, whilst also being realistic about how difficult building the habit may be – leads us to exert more effort. Recognise and plan for the obstacles that may get in the way.
- Share the love Gratitude doesn’t have to be a solo act. Studies show that gratitude is more effective when it is focused on people and relationships, rather than material objects. You can also share your gratitude with your loved ones, by letting them know just how and why you are thankful for them.