I started a journal about three years ago. Once I had gotten my chronic pain under control, I knew good things were ahead and I wanted to document my journey. There was nothing that could stop me! Well, not exactly, but I knew things were going to be different. At the end of every entry, I wrote down what I was grateful for, trying not to repeat myself. After a few weeks, something in my heart and mindset changed. It brought a whole new lens to my outlook on life.
You see, I’ve always been a complainer and a worrier. While I love a good challenge and embrace change, I like to whine and worry. Challenging myself every day to find something that I was truly grateful for took me out of my endless reel of what was wrong.
This act of gratitude has helped me so much during the pandemic. I've been furloughed from my job at at the local library, my in-person Foundation Training classes have been negatively impacted and my kids are mostly in virtual school but I’ve been able to keep my spirits high because of my daily gratitude journal entry. During the pandemic I’ve added something that I’m hopeful for. Hope is what we need to lift us out of this hole. To give us the energy to keep going.
I’m really worried about the long term effects of this pandemic, particularly on our children. I hope I can help this generation of kids in some way in the future - whether through my job at the local library or through my movement classes, I hope I can make a difference!
P.S. Here are a couple of journal writing tips. The first is to combine it with something that you do every day, no matter what. For me that's drinking two cups of coffee first thing in the morning. I grab my journal as I'm pouring my second cup of coffee. I learned this tip of combining habits from the Feel Better Live More podcast by Dr.Rangan Chatterjee, which I highly recommend! The second tip has to do with the type of journal. I think it's imperative that the journal lay totally flat while open, has a nice feel with lines to write on, and pages that aren't too big! I like the Moleskin 5" x 8" size. Happy journaling!