4 Steps To Create The Perfect Gratitude Journal

A woman holding a white pen with black ink, she is writing in a gratitude journal and is writing what she is grateful for. The journal is upon a grey wooden desk with an iced coffee that has a black straw on a coaster.

Photo by My Life Journal on Unsplash

Gratitude is something that has become even more important this year. Practising gratitude is not only a source of positivity but it can help improve your mental health. There are plenty of ways you can practise gratitude and keeping a gratitude journal is one of those great strategies.

A gratitude journal is a diary where you can write what you are grateful for, it is that simple. Gratitude journaling allows you to focus your attention on positive areas of your life and appreciate what you have. Journaling in general has so many mental health benefits. If you are struggling with your mental health keeping a gratitude journal can help improve your self-esteem and ensures that you are focusing on positive feelings and thoughts.

Setting up a gratitude journal is really simple and a tool you can start using right away. I have broken down setting up your gratitude journal in 4 easy steps.

1. Select your journal

When you are selecting your journal you are going to want to choose a journal that is visually appealing to you. You want to love your journal. You can even choose  plain notebook and decorate it to make it your own. You can use stickers or photographs of loved ones. You want to pick up your journal and enjoy writing in it. The market is saturated with a variety of different journals with dotted pages, lined pages, squared or plain. It is what you prefer ad wear you feel comfortable writing in.

2. Create a ritual

Consistency is key. By using a ritual and repeating this it will help that consistency. You can create ritual habits to get your body and mind ready to focus on gratitude. You can do things like light a candle, have a warm drink, meditate or even play one of your favourite songs. You want to make it an enjoyable experience and not feel like a chore.

On top of a bed duvet cover is an opened notebook with writing on the pages. There is a pink pen with a flower at the top placed on one of the pages and on the other page is a cup of tea with the teabag still inside.Photo by Carli Jeen on Unsplash

3. Expressing your gratitude

When you are writing about gratitude you may want to record your thoughts differently. You do not necessarily have to write a paragraph of text, you could use any desired format. You could write in the form of a list, you can draw images, use a collage of photographs or even a write a poem about your thoughts. All of these will help you capture and motivate your gratitude. It is a great process to be able to reflect on your journals especially when times are difficult and you can help to bring positivity.

4. Write at the end of the day

Keeping your ritual with nightly writing in your gratitude journal is important because it allows you to close your day on a high note, going to bed positive can help you have a better nights sleep. It is a calming activity that can help you de-stress and relax which will help with your mental health and benefit your physical health.

Setting up a gratitude journal might be the easy part for you, committing to writing in your journal may be more of a difficult task. Here is how you can ensure you are consistent:

Writing daily is the way to reinforce the habit

To help with the daily repetition you can set an alarm every night and you can remind yourself of that commitment before you go to bed. Rewarding yourself after you have written can be very helpful, immediate reward  can be key to keeping this journal habit.

A woman holding a white pen with black ink over an opened journal. The gratitude journal has what the woman is grateful for with additional doodles.Photo by My Life Journal on Unsplash 

Write at least once a week

If you feel writing daily is to hard to keep up with you could commit to writing once a week. It is an easier commitment to make and there is less pressure put on you. You can use the same reminders as daily journalling. The less frequent writing may help you feel it being less like a chore and it will be helpful and more enjoyable. Writing weekly can also be beneficial if you have a busy schedule, you can use that short time in your week to look after yourself. If this is your first time using any sort of journal, starting off only writing once a week could be beneficial and then can progress your journalling habits to a daily occurrence.

Writing has been proven to boost your mental wellness, your memory and your self-esteem. Writing in a gratitude journal in which ever desired format you prefer will help change your mindset and allow you to appreciate the smaller things in life. 

Do you have a gratitude journal? I’d love to hear in the comments. 

85 thoughts on “4 Steps To Create The Perfect Gratitude Journal

  1. I do not have a dedicated gratitude journal, but I keep a written account of my life and always write about the things that have made me smile over the course of my day. Since I have journaled since I was nine years old, it is fascinating to read backwards and see how my life has changed!

  2. I love the concept of at least once a week. I’ve been writing everyday, but it can be difficult to remember. I plan to keep it by my nightstand so I remember to do it before I go to sleep. 😊👌🏻

  3. I have a gratitude journal. It’s called The Book of Good and every morning I’ll write a little list of things I’m grateful for the day before. Gratitude can really change your life!

  4. What a great way to place gratitude first in my life. I especially liked the idea of writing in it at the end of the day in order to go to sleep on a positive note. Now to start my own! It might help me with more of my own blog prompts as well. Thank you, great post!

    1. I dont keep a gratitude journal, but I do make a list at the end of each year of all of the good things that have happened to me, big and small. So it helps me to reflect on the past 12 months with positivity rather than regret. But jotting down my gratitude in my regular journal throught the year should become a habit. Thanks for the idea!

  5. I don’t have one but what a great idea. I practice yoga and gratitude is an important part of the mental side of yoga. I say it, think it but don’t write it down. But now I will. Thank you.

  6. This is such a lovely idea – I think keeping a record of everything you’re grateful for can help you be more positive!

  7. I love this idea! Thanks so much for sharing. Sometimes we get so caught up with life challenges we often forget the many blessings that take place every day. Having a journal where we can write out what we are grateful for is perfect to keeping us in a positive frame of mind.

  8. Keeping a gratitude journal is definitely a good way to help one see the good things happening in your life. I don’t have a gratitude journal per se but writing down the things that made me happy or smile is my way of looking at the positive side of things.

  9. When I was in high school, I had a journal I would write in almost every day & I’ve been thinking about starting a journal again & a gratitude journal would be great!

  10. I don’t have a gratitude journal, but I am getting into manifestation, which uses the same principles. I think this 2nd lockdown starting a journal may just help get through it! Great tips here, especially writing just once a week if daily is too overwhelming!
    Aimsy xoxo

  11. I love journaling but haven’t given gratitude journaling a try. It sounds like the perfect way to highlight the positives in life. I will have to give this a try. I know exactly which is my many beautiful notebooks to turn into my gratitude journal.

  12. Having a gratitude journal helps with getting your thoughts and mind in that right attitude where you’re more thankful rather than entitled. Having a routine is so important because you can easily track your changes over time. Love these tips!!

    Nancy ✨ mdrnminimalists.com

  13. Really enjoyed this post. I’ve been thinking about doing a gratitude journal for a while but I think I’d struggle with writing in it every day so I love your suggestions of just writing in it at least once a week and setting reminders.

  14. I don’t have a gratitude journal but I do write down things/people I’m grateful for once in a while. I agree with your tips! Your gratitude journal should be personalized and should be written at the end of the day. You don’t have to necessarily write long paragraphs. Even a doodle or drawing will do. Great!


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