Note: The bottom of this article discusses the #1 guided gratitude journal on the market. It includes 12 weeks of guided prompts and questions to help you find the feeling of gratitude every day.
There are a host of benefits that come with creating an intentional practice of gratitude.
People who practice gratitude:
Feel better about their lives
Are more optimistic about the future
Report fewer health problems
Experience heightened satisfaction in their relationships
Have an increased sense of resilience in the face of stressful
Discover an enhanced ability to empathize with others
Reduce the experience of toxic emotions
Experience improved self-esteem
When you truly, genuinely feel grateful every day, it shifts your whole perspective on life.
You start appreciating the little things on a consistent basis. Your mindset shifts away from the negative and toward the positive.
And the best part is, after practicing gratitude daily, over time this becomes your default state. You are physically rewiring how your brain works.
Why Gratitude Positively Impacts Health
It’s a pretty incredible phenomenon if you think about it - how you feel about and perceive your life’s circumstances changes your experience of them on SO many levels.
Two of the reasons gratitude may play a role in physical, mental and emotional well-being:
1. Prevents hedonic adaptation
Gratitude prevents us from taking positive improvements in our lives for granted. Rather than feeling happy for a few minutes when something amazing happens, intentionally being grateful for it allows us to savor it more. It helps us maximize the appreciation we have for great things that happen in our lives.
2. Builds positive action and emotion
Positive emotions can change the way we think and act. When we’re happy, we’re more adventurous, we’re willing to try new things, push our comfort zone, and in a very real way, being happy changes our idea of who we are. !is process provides us with more internal psychological resources that we can rely on in dicult times in our lives. It changes how we take the difficult periods in life.
All this being said, how do we begin to really make a practice of gratitude with gratitude journal prompts that help you foster an actual feeling of gratefulness on a daily basis?
Gratitude Journal Prompts That Work
Effective gratitude journal prompts need to shock you.
Effective gratitude journal prompts all share one thing in common - they shock you into understanding how and why you could be grateful right now in this moment.
For example, if I tell you that you should be grateful for having a hand that can scroll down this article without being concerned about it at all, you might think about it for a second and forget about it the next.
But if I tell you to try open a door without using your hands, you might really see how cumbersome it would be to live your entire life without using your hands to open doors.
That shock of understanding the actual impact that having hands plays in so much of what we do is what we need to find and think about because then we start to feel how important they are rather than just have a single thought about it that dissipates in a moment.
To have the feeling of gratefulness, you need to be connected with the actual impact of what you're grateful for, and how different life would be without it.
Effective gratitude journal prompts don't avoid the negative.
Robert Emmons, one of the leading gratitude researchers in the world, says that while we often associate gratitude with focusing on the good and avoiding the bad, the key to leading a thankful life is embracing setbacks as part of your overall journey.
Although gratitude generates positive emotion, which in turn fosters optimism and hope, our aim is to cultivate a mindset of gratitude.
We are all on this crazy journey.
For whatever reason, we happen to be here on this remote planet in a corner of the universe. For whatever reason, we were born into the life we happen to be living.
Ups and downs are inevitable. the journey comes with success, failure, joy, pain, happiness, sorrow, adventure, static periods, reflective periods, health, sickness... it’s all a part of the journey.
For whatever reason, we find ourselves on this ride we call life.
Everything we experience in our lives is just another part of the ride.
Gratitude journal prompts should help you embrace it all. Should help you express it all.
Own every inch of the good, the bad, and the ugly.
Effective gratitude journal prompts help shift your perspective.
Perspective is everything.
The way I interpret my circumstances determines how I feel about my life, and how I feel determines how I respond to the events taking place in my life.
They try and help you shift your perspective in the way about difficult circumstances you’re dealing with now, or ones you’ve dealt with in the past.
They help you break down how you're already looking at a given situation, and help you understand that there are other ways to see it in which you're actually grateful for something. They help you see that you can be grateful to have the opportunity to be in the position you're in rather than focus on what's difficult about it.
Good gratitude journal prompts help you shift the way you talk to yourself about difficult circumstances.
Effective gratitude journal prompts challenge you to think and act outside your habitual ways of thinking and acting.
Gratitude journal prompts become way more effective when they challenge you to think and act outside of your usual way of living. They make you think differently through asking questions that you don't ordinarily ask yourself.
Much more than 'what are you grateful for today?'
Here's an example:
"Knowing what I know today, how would I guide my younger self through a difficult situation I went through?"
"How could I be more supportive of myself?"
"What can I forgive myself for?"
"How do I utilize my talents and abilities in ways I don't think about or fully appreciate?"
They force you to think. They don't let you off the hook with a simple 2 word answer.
Effective gratitude journal prompts will also prompt you to take action in ways that will undoubtedly challenge your way of living.
For example, really expressing gratitude to someone you have a difficult time pouring your heart out to.
The Gratitude Sidekick Journal is an all a guided 12-week gratitude journey during which you will build gratitude as a consistent habit.
It's a research-based journal that will help make an attitude of appreciation a core part of who you are
The journal will help you:
- 📔 A 66-day, fully guided journal
- 💡 Every day suggests a new tip or idea so you find what works for you
- 🔥 You'll get actionable tips and things like mini-gratitude challenges daily
- ✍️ Reflect on a new gratitude theme daily
- 💌 Be WAY more supportive of yourself mentally
- 🥛 Hone a perspective of practical optimism
A walkthrough of the journal:
📖 Step 1: Learning & Preparing
Start with a crash course on the science behind gratitude, what the process will be like, and a fundamental understanding habit-building in general.
Get a clear idea of WHY you are doing this, WHAT you will be doing, and HOW you will build gratitude as a daily habit.
📝 Step 2: Tracking & Accountability
Each of the three phases provide you with a unique tracking page.
You'll be doing things like listing what you're grateful for based on themes that we provide, tracking the day to day benefits your practice is having on your life, re-framing the events and circumstances of your life to enhance your experience, and learning how to be your own biggest supporter.
You'll get daily prompts to induce gratitude, help you build an awesome relationship with yourself, and renew your perspective on what's most important.
By tracking your progress, you’ll constantly be in touch with how much progress you’re making and you’ll become much more conscious of the benefits you’re realizing even (when they start feeling normal)!
🍿 Step 3: Daily Content
Each day you're given new learning tools, inspiration, and guidance for improving the quality of your gratitude practice.
These include expert tips, actionable strategies, daily challenges, affirmations, links and descriptions to phenomenal videos, podcasts, recommended resources, and more.