Keeping a positivity diary or gratitude journal

Why is it that the one thing you did wrong you remember clear as day while all the things you did right melt away and get forgotten as soon as they’ve happened? I’m no psychologist but I’ve found that keeping a positivity diary or gratitude journal could help turn this around.

img_2682.jpgMy job is high pressured and can be stressful when news breaks or I’m working on a very sad story. I’m a broadcast journalist in television news. I’m new to my team and have made a few mistakes recently while trying to cope with a tight deadline and new computer system. It’s easy to get into a negative cycle of thoughts and start to loose confidence, expect future errors and dwell on the bad things. But there are always a number of positive, funny things that happen each day. People that are kind to you, food that tastes amazing, hilarious stories that colleagues share. So focussing on these for a change has been really good and writing them down helps you acknowledge what you’ve accomplished, who you enjoy hanging out with & makes you feel less stressed or anxious.

People have written books about the benefits of gratitude journals and you can read article after article containing tips on the best way to do it. But I’ve found that trying to write one or two things down a day that made you laugh, smile, feel proud or whatever really lifts up your mood. I do it just before I go to sleep and if I can’t be bothered to do it one day – I just don’t.

I’ve been doing it now for about 3 months though and it’s become easier and more enjoyable. My friend had this ‘one line a day’ diary (see the photo) and it’s nice as it’s small and you can keep it for 5 years and remember things from the past. There isn’t a lot of space to write each day though – which is probably good for a busy person! Despite working on some of the saddest stories at work (Grenfell Tower Fire, the Manchester terror attack etc) I’ve been able to find small things to be grateful for every day and the more and more I’ve done it – the more I’ve been able to recognise the good in my life as it happens. It’s kind of like instagram but more personal and focussed on you rather than impressing others.

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You don’t have to get a specially made gratitude diary, although there are loads out there

But you could download a free app or decorate a cheap notebook with nice left over wrapping paper. Whatever will look inviting on your bedside table so you’ll be more likely to actually open it and write!

***I have not been sponsored, given freebies or paid to write anything on this page.

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