5 Reasons I Started A Gratitude Journal And You Should, Too

5 Reasons I Started A Gratitude Journal And You Should, Too

It's so easy to take things for granted.

How often do you stop to actively appreciate the people and things that make your life possible?

It's so easy to become all too familiar with these aspects of your life and fail to see the true value in them. We fall into a routine, mindlessly go about our day to day activities, and expect people to be there for us when we need help.

Especially when you’re in a depressive or anxious state of mind, it’s so easy to see all of the negatives in life. I’ve read and heard many people talk about this “tunnel vision.” Engulfed in thoughts that lead you to believe that you are not adequate enough for your tasks at hand, you don’t matter, and you will never succeed are the epitome of self-destruction and self-hatred. This negative energy transfers into your relationship with friends, family, work, school, etc.

If you are constantly experiencing this detrimental self-talk, no wonder everything sucks. This is something I’ve come to realize myself. Journaling about the things I’m grateful for allows me to take a step back, get out of my head, and marvel at all the beauty in my life.

1. It guides my positive thinking

Instead of getting discouraged or envious when I see someone with more or my idea of "better" than me, I'm able to look at all the things I do have. It's such a liberating feeling to let go of this constant jealousy towards others and be able to appreciate what you can call your own. I am more enthusiastic about my own life.

2. I go through my day more mindfully

It’s so easy to get distracted by my thoughts throughout the day, to the point where I don’t hear the person who is talking to me, or I will fail to notice the way the sun fills me with energy. Rushing around throughout the day and avoiding potential pain has the power to make you ungrateful and dull. When I know I will be giving myself the time to reflect on all the things I have to be grateful for, it sets my mind up to be in tune with what’s going on around me.

3. I can see problems as opportunities

The mind loves to play tricks on itself. Going into a confrontation with the mindset that you will be rejected or that it will not play out in your favor sets you up for failure. Being grateful does not involve going into a situation with the mindset that it will bring about pain, rather it allows you to appreciate the opportunity at hand.

4. It strengthens my personal relationships

There are plenty of things that I can be grateful for, like my guitar, for example. But I would rather thank my dad for gifting me the guitar. Writing down the ways in which my friends and family have helped and guided me fills me with an appreciation for them. In turn, it shines a light on what I can do to show that I acknowledge their support and be able to help them in return.

5.) It provides a greater sense of self

Showing gratitude to the people and things that surround me fills me with wonder about my own abilities. I can be confident about the ability I have to recognize the meaning of waking up every morning. It provides an opportunity to show love and compassion. It gives me a purpose, to strive to better myself for others around me.

Taking the time to write down the things your grateful will impact your overall happiness. It will allow you to clearly see all the little gift that life has to offer. It floods your mind and body with positive energy.

You should read over these tips and start your gratitude journal today!!

Cover Image Credit: Pexels

Popular Right Now

Despite What Their Instagram Shows, No One's Life Is Picture Perfect

A picture may be worth a thousand words, but a mere photo can never tell the whole story.

Scrolling through my Instagram feed, I can't help but be jealous of my friends or of the various bloggers and celebrities that I follow. I mean, it's hard not to envy them — how could I ever compare with their pristine and perfect lives? Social media depression is a thing, and it haunts me all the time.

I constantly have to ask myself if these people even have any problems in their lives. Why my life can't be as put-together as theirs? Am I the only person facing obstacles?

We say many lies, whether to ourselves or to others, whether big or small. Social media provides an ideal platform to perfect these lies and to create an appearance of perfection. For me, this means making my Instagram feed, Facebook timeline and Snapchat stories look as flawless as possible. After all, I feel obligated to have a perfect social media presence, especially after observing what others post.

The moment of realization really hit me, however, when I saw stumbled upon a friend of a friend of a friend's Facebook profile. He was an attractive star musician with a loving family and circle of friends. As far as I could glean from his timeline, his life was perfect. A great girlfriend, excellent academics, talented at the cello — all ingredients to a successful life. However, as I read the comments on his most recent photos, I realized that he had just recently committed suicide. That got me thinking, if someone's life truly were perfect, why would they kill themselves?

SEE ALSO: Life Is Unfair, But Should We Really Just "Deal With It?"

Slowly, I came to the conclusion that I was not alone in my worries. Because despite the perfect photoshoots or the exotic travels, people were dealing with problems, same as I was. Because despite the extravagant shopping trips or the ideal friends and family, no one's life is perfect.

An old idiom comes to mind that perfectly describes this situation — don't judge a book by its cover. Or in this case, don't judge someone's life by what their social media looks like. After all, in this time and age, social media is essentially a way of "catfishing" other people into believing that someone's life is perfect when really it is just the moment captured in the photo that was perfect. I'll admit, my real life is a far cry from the one I carefully construct on social media. But it's time for me to accept that no one's life is perfect, despite their Twitter posts, Facebook albums or Instagram posts. Yes, a picture may be worth a thousand words, but a mere photo can never tell the whole story.
Cover Image Credit: Instagram / Emitaz

Related Content

Connect with a generation
of new voices.

We are students, thinkers, influencers, and communities sharing our ideas with the world. Join our platform to create and discover content that actually matters to you.

Learn more Start Creating

Why Are We Afraid Of Our Fellow Man?

And Other Daily Ruminations

So, if I could, I’d love instead to title this piece, “7 Reasons Why We Are Afraid Of Our Fellow Man.” But I don’t have the answers. In fact, I simply wonder how our society has become the way it is… and maybe, if we can answer this question, we can start looking into answering, “Well, then, what can we maybe do to change things?”

So… wait, what was I going on about again? Ah, right. Our fellow man. Well, as tends to occur, I had another revelation making my way across our beautiful campus today. I was minding my own business, listening to something nice on my wireless and marching along when I began to take notice of the life around me. As I have mentioned in previous articles — I meditate. And if there’s one thing that meditation teaches you it’s to be aware of the present — the sun on your face, the wind caressing your skin, and the thousands of people around you creating that beautiful hustle and bustle that is life.

Well, today, for the first time, I didn’t see that hustle and bustle. I saw a thousand different humans, all with aspirations and families and stories. Humans who woke up with a dream, or maybe today were too tired to dream. The thing is, today, I zoomed in. I started to take note of their expressions. Eyes straight forward, lips sealed. Eyes straight downward, phone in hand -zoned out. Everyone in their own little bubble. Bubbles aren’t bad — I like bubbles. But what is bad is that that bubble is a shield. Walking around, people don’t smile at each other — in fact, they do just about everything to avoid each other’s glances. The only time someone talks to you is either if they know you or to complement your ass. It’s sad.

I remember in high school, you’re always hyper aware of what people think of you. How you look in relation to them, the differences in your speech, your popularity, your family fortune (what fortune? lol). But we’re not in high school anymore. The problem is, at this point, elevator conversations no longer exist. Random friendships made in the street no longer really…exist. We all share at least one mutual friend… our “smart”phone which has done just about everything but make us smart. In no sense do I under-appreciate technology and all it has done for us, but I also cannot ignore that a detrimental repercussion does exist.

I don’t know about you, but I feel that it’s quite wrong that I feel strange publicly starting off into space to enter thought, rather than staring down at my phone to enter Instagram. We’re slowly becoming less human, I think - seeking connection less - now that we coexist comfortably with a telephone is never gonna judge us. We’ve found an easy way out of awkward elevator rides with strangers, of where to look when we walk, but I feel that if anything, the phone has completely hidden from our view the real solution here — to stop being so damn afraid of that spontaneous glance or conversation.

It’s beautiful to walk around and realize that each person you pass has a life of their own, dreams of their own. It’s beautiful to share a smile and maybe even make their day. It’s amazing to make a new friend simply because you ended up riding the same elevator. Stop being so afraid that someone’s going to judge you. If they do, they’re not even worth your thought because they’re immature, and for your information, probably a thousand times more self conscious than you are.

Make friends — I urge you. And I don’t mean on Tinder. Talk to people. There are so, so many incredible individuals out there that have a lot more in common with you than you think, and like you, are probably just scared to start a conversation. Life really becomes beautiful when you actually allow yourself to experience it.

So start doing it. Get out there. Live! And don’t be afraid to start a conversation with an interesting stranger because

“Those who mind don’t matter, and those who matter don’t mind.” -Bernard Baruch-

Cover Image Credit: @littleleeboo

Related Content

Facebook Comments