3 Reasons Why Expressing Gratitude Leads to a Positive Perspective

Keeping a gratitude log is one of the easiest ways to get yourself moving and start being more aware. Writing in a gratitude log is simple: for every day of the month, write down one thing (or multiple) that you are grateful for. It’s quick and easy, so there are no excuses as to why you can’t find time in your day to do it!

Simply being grateful is something that slips our minds more often than we care to admit. But it’s also one of the easiest ways to turn those days around when you’re feeling a little stuck. If you keep at it for awhile, you’ll start to see how quickly your everyday thought pattern can change. Still wondering what else a gratitude log can do for you? Here are three ways it will be to your benefit:

1. Hello there, self-care

Most of us are just starting out on our self-care journeys, and don’t really give much thought to the fact that it can include small things like painting your nails or eating chocolate and strawberry ice cream (preferably mixed together, of course). A gratitude log was actually one of the first steps I took to improve the way I felt about myself and my outlook on life. I started mine off in my bullet journal, which is a type of planner system I’ll be talking about in later posts. We often believe that a change in our moods can only be caused by some monumental event and it’s quite the opposite. During my own journey I’ve learned that finding happiness in small things can actually count the most. A huge part of that was realizing all that I have to be grateful for. Finding something you appreciate each day trains your brain to think a little more on the positive side, and overall can change your perception.

2. Reflection

My favorite part of keeping a gratitude log is when I can reflect back on all the things I was grateful for in the past month. Usually I do this before I start a new month or anytime I want a little pick-me-up. It’s basically my own record of happy memories - and things like that delicious Spaghetti Carbonara I had at an Italian restaurant in NYC - that I might’ve forgotten about had I not written it down. If you ever need a wake up call, your gratitude log is there to show you just how much you have to be thankful for.

3. Awareness

Starting a gratitude log and keeping up the habit is the tough part. What starts to get easier is finding yourself more aware of all the amazing things (big or small) in your life. Examples include but are certainly not limited to: “those ridiculously good cookies they gave away in the student center” or even simply “sunshine.” Being more aware of these things will lead to a change in perspective. Think of it like this -- focusing on the positive attracts more positivity to your everyday life. Why? Because that’s what you dedicate more of your thought process to. It’s not a foolproof method, nor will it alleviate bad days, but it always helps. So next time when your mind is flying in 50 different directions, tune into the present moment and find something you’re grateful for. Trust me, it works.