Looking back, I first started my daily gratitude practice many moons ago as a child. My mom is the ultimate optimist and she always used to tell me to find at least five things to be happy about each day. Once you can find five things, it becomes so much easier to find more. Once you start to see how much is going right, it gets easier to realise that even during the darkest of phases, there is still much to be grateful for each day. Gratitude is an essential part of self care.
These days, my daily gratitude routine looks a bit different. I have a fantastic daily planner that has a section to list all the things I am grateful for each morning when my day begins. This really helps to set the tone for the day ahead and also helps to boost my mood.
That’s not to say that bad days don’t happen or that life can get extremely difficult for many, many people who are facing hardships that are impossible to imagine. The thing about gratitude is that it doesn’t take away any of the pain. What it does do, however, is make us shift our mindsets so that we are able to still see the good in life. When this happens, the bad stuff becomes a little easier to get through.
How do you go about starting a daily gratitude journal, and what should you know about cultivating an attitude of gratitude? Let’s take a look.
Starting a Daily Gratitude Practice
The most important thing to know about beginning a daily gratitude practice is that it takes practice. It’s not something to do once in a while. Rather, it’s something to do every single day. The more you pratice gratitude, the easier it becomes to find the good. Weirdly, the more that happens, the more good seems to happen as well.
If you’re battling to get a daily gratitude practice started or you’re not quite sure how to start, here are some tips that may help.
Get a journal.
Even a notebook will do. Having a physical book to write down what you are grateful for each day will make it far easier to cultivate gratitude. You may find that an online tool works just as well. I find that there is something about writing things down that is strangely comforting.
At first, I used to write down very vague, generic things – family, friends, cats. This is a good start but being clear about what you are grateful for is a great way to let the universe know where your life is going right. Yesterday, I wrote down having friends who care enough to share things they find online that remind them of me. The other day I wrote down being able to work from home on cold days.
Add at least five things.
This sounds like a lot – it soon gets a lot easier to find even more than five things, though. The reason that this is important is that it forces you to think a bit deeper about your day and week, to find the good in everyday life and to consider the small things that are so often forgotten. Get creative and think about how things are going RIGHT rather than wrong.
How do you embrace gratitude within your day to day life? Share your thoughts below on how you have started a daily gratitude practice.