benefits of gratitude journaling


What is gratitude journaling?

First, you've to understand what gratitude means — it is one of our many emotions that allows us to feel thankfulness and appreciation for the things around us.

And gratitude journaling essentially is an act of penning down a list of things that you are grateful and thankful for in your life. Cultivating gratitude is in fact a very powerful way for us to improve both our physical and mental well-being, simply because it makes us happy and those effects tend to be pretty long-lasting.

These are some of the benefits associated with gratitude journaling:

1. Improves your health

Many studies have shown that keeping a gratitude journal actually can be incredibly beneficial for our health and well-being. According to a study led by psychology professor Nancy Digdon, a mere act of spending 15 minutes to pen down a few things they're grateful for just before bed has the ability to help people sleep longer and better. Besides improved sleep, it’s also been shown in various other studies to have the ability to increase our energy and vitality, decrease depression and significantly boost our levels of positivity.

2. Teaches you to focus on what really matters

Writing down what you are thankful for will shed light on the things that you want to be surrounded with more in your life. Keep your attention on these, and filter out other negative things that aren't necessary in your life. This way, you can focus on the things that truly matters, which in turn makes you a happier person as a whole.

3. Gets you through tough times

Life isn't always smooth sailing. On days when you feel gloomy or are struggling with obstacles, open up your gratitude journal and read through the things that you're thankful for. It'll remind you that you have great people and things in your life, and the magnitude of the obstacle or event that's making you unhappy will naturally shrink. This also helps you to readjust your attitude to focus more on the good instead of the bad.

4. Makes you a more positive person overall

Cultivating an attitude of gratitude gives you the power to feel happy and contented at any time in your life. Because of the simple fact that it serves as a constant reminder that great things do exist in your life. Becoming a more positive person in turn attracts more positive energy and events towards you, therefore improving both your quality of life and your personal well-being as a whole.

So try taking out some time before bed to pen down a few things that you're thankful for in your life. It can be written in your journal, a plain old notebook, or even on just a piece paper. And if you need some tips on how to incorporate a new habit in your daily routine, check out this post.

Vinita Tang