Gratitude + Journaling = The Best Self-Care

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One of the biggest mental shifts you can create is expressing more gratitude. Gratitude is one of the most powerful tools we have in our arsenal. It has the power to change our perspective, shrink our biggest problems, and attract abundance into our lives.

Mentally and emotionally, expressing gratitude has been known to reduce anxiety & depression by crowding out negative emotions like anger, frustration, and resentment. Robert A. Emmons, a well-known gratitude researcher, has long studied the psychological & physical effects of gratitude. His results show maintaining a consciously grateful outlook can improve your well-being. Researchers have also noted that people who regularly express gratitude are generally healthier. This would make sense because when you are grateful for something you work very hard to care for & preserve that thing. So, if you are grateful for your body & good health you’d work pretty hard to maintain that good health by eating well & being physically active.

focus creates expansion

What we focus on expands. The more we focus on the good things in life, the more greatness we see in our lives. That’s the beauty of gratitude. Once you start noticing things in your life that you are grateful for, it’s that much easier to point out other parts of your life that you are grateful for. I experienced this first-hand when I started my training as an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach in 2014. As a part of our curriculum, we were sent a journal and had to write in it daily. My favorite part of the journal was the gratitude section. At first, I thought I had to come up with some prolific thought about what I was grateful for. But the true power of gratitude is being grateful for the little things. When I take the time to show gratitude for being alive, having living parents, my husband, a home, food, a job, etc. the big issues don’t seem so big after all.

Another aspect of gratitude that we must prioritize is self-appreciation! How often do you take the time to appreciate yourself for all that you’ve accomplished? Yeah, it may sound crazy it’s important to focus inwardly on your strengths, talents, & growth. I mean…do you realize how freakin’ fantastic you are?? No, seriously! You are fucking fantastic and you need to celebrate your magnificence every single day! I have to admit that I am my worst critic and have struggled with perfectionism pretty much my whole life. It’s been a long road towards self-love & compassion but it feels so good to look in the mirror and say “Sarah, you are fucking fantastic!” and mean it. When we validate & appreciate ourselves we empower ourselves.

Writing in that journal was more effective, in regards to my personal development, than anything else we covered in the program. It showed me that taking just 5 minutes to write about what I was grateful for helped put all of my problems into perspective. It gave me hope that things would get better. It helped me see that I’ve gone through was temporary and if I made it through that, then I could make it through anything. It soothed my anxiety and helped me release the worry that I was carrying around. The burden of worry can be so heavy but if we remind ourselves of what we have & what we’ve gone through, it makes that load lighter & lighter.

So, if you’re a worry wart like I am, I’d suggest getting a pretty journal from TJ Maxx, Ross, or any other store & start writing. It doesn’t have to be anything prolific…just ask yourself “what am I grateful for today?” and the ideas will start flowing. Remember, there is power in the small stuff. When you list the small things you’re grateful for, the gratitude will just flow from you and when you’re done you may be surprised at just how blessed you really are.

I am so grateful for the opportunity to have this platform and share my thoughts & knowledge with beautiful people like yourself :).

Let me know in the comments below what you’re thankful for.



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