When you think about it, there’s probably a lot for you to be grateful for. You woke up this morning with a roof over your head. If you’re like me, you started the day with a hot cup of coffee. You’re a self-starter, entrepreneur, creator, and influencer. You’re building a brand and selling Print-On-Demand! That’s a lot to be thankful for right there.
Noting what each of us is grateful for is usually overlooked due to hectic work and family schedules, activities, stress, not living in the moment, etc. If asked, most of us probably couldn’t say what we’re grateful for in a typical day. Think about it. Could you easily remember small moments from the day that brought you the most joy? Reflecting on what you’re grateful for can lead to a happier, more content life. All it takes is a few moments before bed each night, and a gratitude journal to record your thoughts.
As summer comes to an end and September begins, I challenge all our merchants, influencers, creators, or whatever you call yourself, to keep a Gratitude Journal for 30 days. Journal what it is you are thankful for each day!
So, what’s a Gratitude Journal?
A gratitude journal is not a diary, let’s start there. It’s not a collection of random thoughts about your day. It’s literally things you are grateful for in a day. Things that brought you joy – big or small. And everyone’s journal will be different! The most important part of this is being present and focusing on what brought you joy.
Gratitude journaling is all about focusing on the positive things in your life, and it can be a great way to reflect on your day-to-day experiences. Plus, gratitude journaling has been shown to have numerous benefits, including improved mental well-being, increased happiness, and even better sleep! There are so many perks.
Step one of this challenge is figuring out how you want to journal. Are you a pen and paper kind of person, or are you more comfortable using a digital platform? Some people are more comfortable jotting down their thoughts in a physical journal, whether its leather-bound or a cheaper option. I know I prefer the sensation of writing instead of typing. Here are some great options if you do, too.
If not, writing in the notes app on your fine or doing your entries using something like Google Drive works just fine! Your gratitude journaling isn’t dependent on the medium you choose.
Set some time each day for your gratitude journaling. Commit to a certain time or amount of time you will write what you are grateful for each day. Could be 5 minutes or 30 minutes. In the morning or right before bedtime. Set these goals and commit to them. If you find that journaling before bed seems like a great idea but then realize that lunchtime is better, that’s ok! The point is to be present and be grateful for the things in your life that bring you joy.
You’ll learn what works best for you and your schedule after a couple days. Maybe you were too ambitious going into it and thought you had more time than you did. It’s ok to adapt and journal less or more depending on your schedule. Time management is a necessary skill when you’re a creator, small business owner, or someone who works from home. We have 5 time management tips to help you get the most out of your work day!
Staring at a blank page can be overwhelming. What should you write? How do you start? You might think, am I thankful for this or am I writing just to write? It’s ok to be unsure! Here are a few gratitude journaling prompts to help you get started:
- What’s something that makes you unique and you’re thankful for?
- Is there something in your life that you did not have a year ago and are thankful for?
- Think of a mistake you made. What did you learn from it?
- What’s something that made you laugh or cry today?
- Why did you start your business?
- Who is someone that helped shaped you to be the person you are?
- Is there someone that you were able to help today?
- What was something new that you learned today?
- Name a tough situation and someone who helped you through it.
- Write a thank you note to yourself.
- Look outside and write about things that you see and are thankful for.
- A musician, writer, or another talent that inspires you.
- Activities that you enjoy.
Find what works for you. Some people love lists, while others are more visual. Draw charts or create images that go along with your gratitude. There are no hard and fast rules to gratitude journaling. The point is to reflect and create!
The Final Step!
Look back at your progress and see what has made you happy. Things might be different today than when you started. Has your happiness improved? What about interactions with others? Has your inner dialogue improved and become more positive? Regardless of your answers to any of these questions, don’t get discouraged when trying to create a new habit. Good habits take time to learn. Focus on the positive and how you are becoming more grateful each day. It’s a different view that will take some time to get used to, but the sights are well worth the time it takes to get there. And the journaling will only get better!
Looking for another way to express gratitude in your life? You should consider making your own merch! It’s a fun way to grow your brand and connect with people.