When people ask me how to get cracking with radical self love, invariably one of the first things I recommend is the practice of gratitude. Sometimes the reaction I get is surprise, but more often than not I hear, “Yeah, okay, sure, but what can I really do?”
The answer remains the same: count your blessings. Gratitude is immensely powerful. Being thankful for what I have has literally changed my life. I know it sounds too simple to work, but that’s the beauty of it. You can discover the wonder in your own world in an instant: all you have to do is take a moment to do it.
The effects of gratitude are incredible, so it makes sense that I’m always on the hunt for more ways to incorporate it into my life.
Enter stage left: The Five Minute Journal. The creators claim “A Happier You in 5 Minutes a Day”, which I don’t doubt, assuming you use the thing, of course!
“If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” (Meister Eckhart)
Hovering at around 270 pages and bound with grey cloth, The Five Minute Journal is an unassuming-looking thing. Just like gratitude itself, the concept behind the Journal is simple: keep it beside your bed, and write in it when you wake up and before you go to sleep.
Every day has a template. In the morning, you write 3 things you’re grateful for, 3 things that would make today great, and a daily affirmation (“I am…”). In the evening, you take a few moments to jot down 3 amazing things that happened, and a quick note of how you could have made today better.
In addition, every seven days, you’ll be issued a weekly challenge (for example: smile at three strangers, visualise your perfect day, no electronic devices after 9pm). The journal is full of quotes, and the front of the book is all about how gratitude works, the point of keeping a journal, and what you can hope to achieve by making it a daily practice.
My Five Minute Journal showed up this morning, and I immediately placed it next to my bed. I’m going to start tomorrow morning, and I can’t wait! Would you ever consider a daily gratitude practice? I think this book could be the perfect way to kickstart your thankfulness.