One of the things I frequently get comments on and questions about is my daily gratitude journal. I thought there could be no better day than World Gratitude Day to talk more about how this practice started and what is has meant to me.
“The roots of World Gratitude Day was started in 1965 at the International East-West Center in Hawaii during a Thanksgiving Dinner. At the dinner, attendees pledged to hold a Gratitude Gathering the following September 21st in their home countries. This grew to be an annual event.”
MY GRATITUDE JOURNAL ROOTS
As a teenager I had a tendency to focus on the negative, life was generally good but I found the little things and focused in on them. College introduced me to a whole new world of people who weren’t so self focused and I realized…I didn’t want to live or think that way forever! After our wedding…I was hurt, but happy, but sad, but excited. I mean I had this amazing man, but are you kidding me that was a disaster and a day that I was going to have to tell people about for years to come.
My confusion was my inner self wanting to find a place of feeling good about the situation. At this point I had also dislocated my knee, so my standard refuge of running wasn’t entirely available. Hence, I started to seek out uplifting books, audio books, podcasts and anything else I could that would provide some clarity. One thing which jumped out over and over again was that “what you think about you get” and you can start to change this process by simply remembering every day all the good things that you have.
HOW I TOOK IT ON
Initially it was a notebook next to my bed…but I didn’t always remember to use it. I would read a book and drift to sleep without picking up my pen. So I started to do it in the morning…but then I was able to run again and would burst out the door without picking up my pen.
Eventually I realized that another thing which I chose to do daily was blog. Why not include my daily gratitude there as a reminder that no matter what else is happening I am open to the wonderful things that life has to offer. One of my personal goals was to work very hard not to simply write the same things every day, so especially because I was posting it on the blog I felt more accountable to really think of all the things in life for which I could show gratitude.
I have continued to be surprised and overjoyed by the ongoing comments about my gratitude journal. A number of bloggers have written to say they started the practice on their own site, others to say it is a reminder to them each day that there is always something worthwhile happening…
In the English language, the word “present” has three distinct meanings: “here”, “now” and “a gift”. For me this is exactly what the Gratitude Journal has done…allowed me each day to take a few moments to remember to enjoy the present.
What are you grateful for today? How can you spread world gratitude day to those around you?
I am grateful for opportunities to share
I am grateful for those who invent “world holidays”
I am grateful for Oprah
I am grateful for beautiful journals
I am grateful for my wedding ring