Journal Prompts for Cultivating Gratitude

September 06, 2020

Journal Prompts for Cultivating Gratitude

We are just two weeks shy of the first day of Fall, which means that the season of gratitude is upon us! If you follow the shop on Instagram, you might have noticed that I often talk about the mental and physical benefits of gratitude. Our thoughts impact our health as much as the foods we eat, and expressing thankfulness for what we already have is one of the most important forms of self-care we can do. 

Gratitude helps you fall in love with the life you already have. 

Did you know that when we take the time to ask ourselves what we are grateful for, the production of dopamine and serotonin increase and travel to the ‘bliss’ center of our brain? This means that practicing gratitude is a natural antidepressant. The more you stimulate these neural pathways, the stronger and more automatic they become. Gratitude is a practice! And we need to train ourselves consistenty and intentionally to truly take advantage of the benefits it provides. 

Gratitude + Journaling 

Gratitude Journal

One of my favorite ways to practice gratitude is in my journal. At the end of every entry, I jot down at least five things I am grateful for. It doesn't matter how I'm feeling - content, exhausted, overwhelmed, sensitive, angry - I don't put the notebook away until I list my blessings. And you know what? I always feel better after. I feel less anxious, and things just seem more manageable. 

I completely relate to people who feel like journaling just isn't for them. I have started and abandoned so many notebooks to be repurposed as art pads for my kiddos. It took a pandemic for the habit to finally set in. So don't give up! 

A few tips that helped me:

- Write during breakfast or lunch.

- Keep it on your nightstand and write a few sentences right before bed.

- Keep it by your phone charger so that it's not out of sight, out of mind. 

- Use journal prompts.

- Short on time? Literally just list 5 things you are grateful for and date it. (09/04/20 I am grateful for: my health, being able to work from home, comfy bed to rest in, cold watermelon, and access to yoga videos.) 

- Miss a day? Miss a week? No sweat. Express your gratitude out loud or in your mind, and pick it right back up when you get a chance! There is no wrong way to journal. 

Prompts to Encourage Gratitude 

Here are some of the prompts that I use to encourage finding all of the postives in my life: 

1. I find comfort in...

2. I am proud of my...

3. I'm looking forward to...

4. Things I like about my home...

5. Skills I am thankful for...

6. Things that make me smile...

7. Things I like about my job...

8. People I am grateful for...

9. Movies/Shows/Books/Songs/Art that make me happy...

10. These are my basic needs that are being met...  

I truly hope these are as helpful for you as they were for me.

Happy journaling, friends! And remember, happiness doesn't lead to gratitude. Gratitude for what you already have leads to happiness. 

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