Did you know that on any given day, we share positive emotions with people three times more often than negative ones? Despite all the negative stuff happening around us, researchers have found that people tend to empathize with people they are close to and share their joys, excitements, and enthusiasm far more often than we suffer their negative emotions.
Here’s another fun fact: one of the key ways people find lasting happiness and well-being is by appreciating the good and reveling in the positives that are already around us. So here’s a super easy (and rewarding) way to increase the positives in your life. How about giving gratitude journaling a go? Scroll down to learn more about gratitude journaling and to print free gratitude journaling pages in lots of inspiring designs.
What is Gratitude Journaling
Gratitude journaling is a simple and easy way to notice just how much good is happening in your life. Researchers have found that gratitude journaling actually creates wellbeing in people’s lives, and a simple practice of gratitude journaling delivers benefits like:
- Improving optimism and satisfaction with life
- Boosting physical health, such as by reducing headaches, acne, coughing, and nausea
- Experiencing more positive emotions like interest, excitement, joy, and pride
- Helping people feel more connected with others
- Improving the quality of sleep
How can gratitude journaling deliver so many benefits?
Gratitude journaling links to some of the ways that humans create well being , including knowing one’s worth, seeing how our actions have an impact, growing through discomfort, and feeling connected to others. According to happiness researcher Sonya Lyubomirsky, here are 8 ways that gratitude journaling boosts positivity:
- Helps us savor the good
- Boosts self-worth
- Helps us cope with stress
- Encourages moral acts that increase kindness
- Builds social bonds
- Acts like an antidote to envy
- Reduces negative emotions
- Resets our appreciation so we don’t take things for granted
If you want to know more about the benefits of gratitude journaling, you can learn more in Chapter 22 of Rooted in Decency. Or, just jump in and get started.
How to Practice Gratitude Journaling
To practice gratitude, the steps are very simple. Once a week, ask yourself, “What are a few small or large things from the past week that I’m grateful for?” That’s it. Super easy, right?
You may find that it helps to set a weekly reminder on your phone, and if you want to do it more often, go for it. Based on Lyubomirsky’s research, gratitude journaling offers benefits as long as it doesn’t become a chore. In her studies, people who wrote down things they were grateful for one time per week saw significant increases in their happiness levels. If writing isn’t your thing, no problem. Pondering things you're grateful for or doing something else creative to express your gratitude is also effective. So scroll down and pick your a gratitude journaling page that inspires you!
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