Keeping a record of the things we are grateful for is a great way to boost our mood and appreciate all the joy that already exists in our lives, even if we aren’t where we really want to be just yet. You’ve probably thought about creating a gratitude journal at one time or another. You may have even started one and then either forgotten to add to it or just stopped writing in it altogether.
Yet, the key to getting the benefits of a gratitude journal is to add to it on a consistent basis until it becomes a cherished habit. When you make consistent entries, you’ll create a whole treasure trove of memories and experiences you can return to, even on your worst days.
So how do you make gratitude a habit? One way I’ve found is to make adding things to my gratitude journal more fun. For me that means adding color, drawing doodles and injecting my own creativity into the process. This gets me excited to return to my gratitude journal much more often.
Here are 5 ways to add a bit of pizzazz to your own gratitude journal and reap the benefits of a more consistent gratitude practice.
1. Create a gratitude page in your planner or bullet journal
I borrowed this idea from Kara over at Boho Berry, one of the best blogs I’ve ever found on creative bullet journalling. Kara dedicates a page in her bullet journal each week to recording things she’s grateful for.
I adapted the technique to fit into my smaller, mini bullet journal. I create a page each month, writing small snippets of gratitude whenever I remember throughout the month. I use different colored pens and markers to make it fun. At the end of the month, I have a whole page of gratitude snippets that I enjoy looking over from time to time.
If you don’t use a bullet journal, you can do the same thing in a weekly planner or day book. Simply find a space and write your gratitude list each day, week or month.
Adding your gratitude lists to something you use every day will make it much more likely that you’ll remember to catch those little moments of appreciation right when they happen.
2. Add borders or doodles that represent your gratitude
Whether you record something in your planner or journal each day or have a dedicated page for recording gratitude, try adding some colorful borders or doodles to the page to give it some interest.
You can try:
– Recording each thought in fancy handwriting
– Adding fun shapes and patterns
– Using different markers, pens, crayons or colored pencils
Some of my favorite journalling tools include:
Even if you aren’t confident in your drawing skills yet, using your gratitude journal as a place to practice can be a great way to exercise your creativity in a safe place that no one else ever needs to see. Plus, by drawing or doodling, you’ll likely remember the experiences much more vividly when you revisit them later. This can make returning to your gratitude practice much more fun and inviting.
3. Sticker Fun / Collage
Adding colorful stickers that represent some aspect of your gratitude can also be a fun way to jazz up your gratitude journal. You can find a ton of choices that suit your style at craft stores and here on Amazon.com.
You might even try creating your own stickers by printing out favorite pictures on sticker paper, then cutting them out and sticking them into your journal.
If you don’t have sticker paper, you can use a glue stick or glue pen to add the images to your journal. After struggling with the big, blunt tips on typical glue sticks, I found this awesome glue pen made by ZIG that allows me to add glue just where I need it.
4. Mandala Gratitude
Another cool way to create a visual record of your gratitude is by drawing a mandala. A mandala is simply a circle made up of a variety of symmetrical shapes. You might try writing the word gratitude in the center of your mandala, then drawing rings around the word to create lines you can write on.
Or you could divide your mandala into sections and write something you are grateful for in each section.
It can be hard to remember to practice gratitude in a world that keeps us so busy. But when you take the time to make your gratitude journal fun and unique to you, you’ll enjoy returning to it again and again, which means you’re much more likely to keep up with your practice and reap the rewards that come with it.
Do you have a favorite way you decorate your gratitude journal that I haven’t covered here? Feel free to share it in the comments!