How to keep a Gratitude Journal
Lately I've been trying to stay in the moment. I've always had a habit of worrying about the past, and nervously anticipating the future. As I've gotten into a more regular meditation practice, I've noticed that these habits have gone away and that I can finally relax and be present. Best of all, I now can watch Game of Thrones and remember the characters' names!
Besides TV making a lot more sense, there are a lot of benefits to staying in the present moment (I mean duh, people have been practicing meditation for thousands of years). Food tastes better, your communication skills improve and you honestly feel blissed out pretty much all the time. I would definitely check out Suze Yalof Schwartz's book,Unplug: A Simple Guide to Meditation for Busy Skeptics and Modern Soul Seekers, for getting started with meditation. It's a quick read and provides a lot of insight on the practices of meditation, as well as why it is so effective!
Besides meditation, my other favourite way to stay in the present is to keep up with my Gratitude Journal. A Gratitude Journal can be a separate notebook, a section in your journal, or somewhere on your phone. It gives you a few moments in the day to reflect and appreciate how fortunate you are. Using my journal has also reaffirmed my high school yearbook quote, everyday may not be good but there is something good in every day. Even on my worst days, I'm still able to focus on a positive aspect of it. Whether it be the way my cats cuddled with me as I woke up, or a soothing cup of tea, there's always a glimmer of light in my life. I think keeping up with my journal has also kept me a more consistently positive person!
I've been using the Five Minute Journal app as my gratitude journal. I really like the layout, and as the name boasts, it literally takes 5 minutes.
When you first open the app, a quote pops up. If you know me, you know I love quotes, so already, this app is perfect for me. I also really liked that this one was a fairytales quote!
You make two entries a day- one in the morning, and one at night.
For the morning, you put what you're grateful for, how you'll make the day great, and a daily affirmation. Sometimes I make my affirmations silly, other times I'll use a kundalini mantra. Starting my day with these thoughts keeps me connected and in a positive headspace for the rest of the day.