Tag Archives: Gratitude Journal

Gratitude in the New Year — Giving Thanks Can Make You Happier

Katie Daisy 2020 weekly planner

Image of the Katie Daisy 2019-2020 On-the-Go Planner

As we enter a new year, many of us contemplate developing new habits with the desire to enrich our lives. While some of these resolutions can be lofty goals, one simple practice of expressing gratitude or keeping a gratitude list can have a lasting impact. A weekly planner or wall calendar is a wonderful place to jot down your lists and then reflect back on them at the end of the year.

According to Harvard Health Publishing, “In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships.”

Here’s more from the Harvard Health Publishing website:

The word gratitude is derived from the Latin word gratia, which means grace, graciousness, or gratefulness (depending on the context). In some ways gratitude encompasses all of these meanings. Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives. In the process, people usually recognize that the source of that goodness lies at least partially outside themselves. As a result, gratitude also helps people connect to something larger than themselves as individuals — whether to other people, nature, or a higher power.

Here are some ways to cultivate gratitude on a regular basis:

Keep a gratitude journal. Make it a habit to write down or share with a loved one thoughts about the gifts you’ve received each day.

Write a thank-you note. You can make yourself happier and nurture your relationship with another person by writing a thank-you letter expressing your enjoyment and appreciation of that person’s impact on your life. Send it, or better yet, deliver and read it in person if possible. Make a habit of sending at least one gratitude letter a month. Once in a while, write one to yourself.

Thank someone mentally. No time to write? It may help just to think about someone who has done something nice for you, and mentally thank the individual.

Count your blessings. Pick a time every week to sit down and write about your blessings — reflecting on what went right or what you are grateful for. Sometimes it helps to pick a number — such as three to five things — that you will identify each week. As you write, be specific and think about the sensations you felt when something good happened to you.

Pray. People who are religious can use prayer to cultivate gratitude.

Meditate. Mindfulness meditation involves focusing on the present moment without judgment. Although people often focus on a word or phrase (such as “peace”), it is also possible to focus on what you’re grateful for (the warmth of the sun, a pleasant sound, etc.).


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Sale — 2020 Calendars, Limited Stock

Daily Journaling: A Transformative Habit

Kuan Yin journal featuring the beautiful artwork of Duirwaigh Studios. Click image for more info.

The beginning of a new year often inspires self-reflection. Journaling is an excellent way to capture this inspiration, track our emotions, or cultivate a routine toward mindfulness. Benjamin P. Hardy posted an excellent article on Medium about the many benefits of daily journaling as a keystone habit. Here is an excerpt:

Journaling Clears Your Emotions
Several research studies have found that writing in your journal reduces stress.These benefits include:

  • Reducing scatter in your life
  • Increased focus
  • Greater stability
  • Deeper level of learning, order, action, and release
  • Holding thoughts still so they can be changed and integrated
  • Releasing pent-up thoughts and emotions
  • Empowerment
  • Bridging inner thinking with outer events
  • Detaching and letting go of the past
  • Allowing you to re-experience the past with today’s adult mind

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Writing by Hand: Nourishes the Soul and the Brain

Our Kwan Yin journal featuring artwork by Duirwaigh Studios

Our Kwan Yin journal features artwork by Duirwaigh Studios

Last week we shared a couple of posts on our Facebook page about the benefits of writing by hand. WOW. We were surprised by the number of views. Something really resonated with our friends.

Human beings have long known and cherished the power of writing by hand to nurture the soul. Poets, scholars, authors, and educators the world over have historically shared their wisdom through writing. Many writers use journaling to capture ideas, dreams, sorrows, joys, and more. In The Artist’s Way, Julia Cameron extolls the effectiveness and inspiration of “morning pages” —  hand writing 3 pages each morning — in removing creative blocks. The list of examples could go on. Continue reading