It feels a little surreal that I am soon to finish my third gratitude journal. Keeping them has been such a rewarding journey.
I started my first journal the summer of 2017. I was ready to put some serious effort into becoming and staying happy. I got myself an empty Moleskine, just to get a little fancy, and named it “Gode ting” in Norwegian – “Good Things”.
Since then I started taking 30 minutes (almost) every evening to write down at least three good experiences that have happened to me during the day. At first every effort to find something good felt forced, and I can’t say that I consistently kept up the practice. But with time, it became almost an instinct, something that has infused my way of looking at the world. Which was just what I hoped for.
Within the next eight months my first Moleskin was finished. On most days I had at least 5-7 memorable experiences to note, everything from the smallest impression, to big milestones at work or personally. It feels rewarding to flip through the earlier journals. I now have permanent reminders of a lot of the good thing that happened to me, and I am better at noticing new things.
Here are some moments from my journals:
MARCH 18TH 2018
- I moved the last things from my old apartment with the help of my closest friend. What a relief it is to finally be completely done with the move. And what I relief it was to know I was never alone in this process.
- I followed my mom’s advice and made myself a nice hot chocolate. But a healthy version with almond milk and honey.
- The weather has shifted, and it feels like spring is really here.
APRIL 13TH 2018
- It is Friday again! Yay!!!
- My colleagues gave me really nice feedback on a presentation. It was improvised. I had almost no time to prepare it and felt extremely nervous about it. Supposedly I managed to communicate clearly and made the topic sound interesting.
- I finally started learning French on Duolingo again. Why was I overthinking it so much before? It is so much fun!
APRIL 28TH 2018
- How nice it is to start a new project at work. It feels so fresh and motivating.
- I visited an old friend in the evening and we chatted about absolutely everything.
- I had the loveliest long walk back home. The sky was pink, violet and blue, and the cloud had formed a beautiful foggy haze.
My “Good things” journal helped me searching positive experiences, but also helped me stay positive during difficult times. Practicing it on those days matters immensely. It is important to keep up the noting, even if the only experiences you can think of seem very insignificant.
Have you ever tried to keep a gratitude journal? What experiences made you happy, that actually surprised you?
Last but not least:
What are the nicest things about today?