Gratitude Journal - How to be Grateful everyday with simple steps


Gratitude Journal - How to be Grateful everyday with simple steps

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Do you know that One of the early research studies on gratitude journals found that "counting your blessings" in a journal book led to improved psychological and physical functioning?

The participants in this experiment who wrote weekly in their gratitude journals, each consisting of five things they were grateful for, were more optimistic towards the upcoming week and life as a whole, spent more time exercising, and had fewer symptoms of physical illness. Those participants who kept daily gratitude journals reported increased overall gratitude, positive effect, enthusiasm, determination, and alertness. They were also more likely to help others and make progress towards their personal goals, compared to the participants who did not keep a gratitude journal.

For a sample of adults with neuromuscular disease, writing daily gratitude journals for 3 weeks lead to increased optimism about one's life, longer and more refreshing sleep, greater positive emotions, and feeling more connected to others. Overall, participants who kept weekly or daily gratitude journals had greater psychological and physical benefits when compared to participants who did not keep gratitude journals.

Neural correlates of gratitude. Medial Prefrontal activity correlating with participants' gratitude ratings.

Furthermore, the positive effects of gratitude can begin as early as childhood. A study conducted by Froh, Sefick, and Emmons in 2008 examined the effects of a grateful outlook on the subjective well being of 221 early adolescents in sixth and seventh grade. The children were asked to “count their blessings” and set aside time daily to list what they were thankful for.

Results found that counting one's blessings was associated with enhanced self-reported feelings of gratitude, optimism, life satisfaction, and decreased negative effect. Furthermore, exhibiting gratitude correlated to long-term satisfaction with school experience.

Another benefit may be that gratitude journals are a relatively easy and enjoyable way to boost happiness: Parks et al. found that when presented with eight different happiness interventions, gratitude journals were the third most popular (preceded by “Goal evaluation and tracking” and “Savoring the moment”). Similarly, Seligman et al. found that participants were more likely to continue their “three good things” exercise on their own after the one-week intervention than the other exercises, and this lack of attrition mediated the link between the exercise and its benefits.

A satisfied follower sent us this video when she got her 90 days gratitude journal:

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