My new year’s resolution this year was to start a gratitude journal. It consists in writing down all the things I feel appreciation for. From the start I knew that for this practice to work I had to focus on what feels good. I began by paying attention to events, accomplishments and even compliments that added a little sparkle to my day.
The mere fact of putting all this in writing opened my eyes to some precious jewels: a fresh breeze in summer, warm sun in winter, my cat purring, a good laugh with my friends… I started to notice all the valuable moments in my day to day that I would normally take for granted.
This is how I discovered that my life is made up of countless miracles that are continuously unfolding. If I pause and take notice I can see how things are ok just the way they are; in fact they are perfect. I am living a life that is quite full without hardly being aware of it. My gratitude practice helps me to see and appreciate all this abundance.
Another thing I had to face was my natural proclivity towards complaining. It is a terrible habit and it reinforces discontentment. When I fixate my attention on what I don’t like I lose sight of what’s actually good. It’s interesting to observe. I’ve noticed that griping is accompanied by a sense of powerlessness and frustration. It also gives me permission to fault others for my own problems. Not good!
Because of this, I try to complain less and appreciate more. My gratitude practice helps me see that the most simple little things, those I can access in this very moment are the most valuable to me. I’m learning that life itself is inherently wise and that I can trust it!
How to make you own gratitude journal
It’s easy. In my journal I write, draw and do collage. I’m a visual person and I like using my hands to make thing. It makes me feel good. Maybe you have your own favorite medium, one that reflects your sensibility. For example, you could be more auditory that visual, in that case you could record an audio diary. What’s important is to notice those things you sincerely appreciate.
What makes you feel good? It could be a friend, your pet or something you just ate… Once you’ve got it, write it down! Try this for a week and let me know how it went.