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Gratitude Journal

A wonderful idea from Intelligent Change:

https://www.intelligentchange.com/blogs/news/the-ultimate-guide-to-keeping-a-gratitude-journal

Imagine how it would feel starting every day in a positive mood, energized, ready to take on the world. Instead of mentally replaying all your life’s problems and pulling the covers over your head, you chose to take control of your mind and focus on the good.

Day by day you appreciate life more and find yourself feeling happier. Stop rolling your eyes. It is not that crazy of a concept. Today, we will show you how using a gratitude journal.
If you ever considered keeping a gratitude journal or currently keep one, we’ve compiled the Ultimate Gratitude Journal Guide based upon our years of research, from thousands of customers, from our very own gratitude journal, The Five Minute Journal.

What exactly is a Gratitude Journal?

On a very basic level, gratitude journaling involves writing about things for which you are grateful.

grateful jessica

On a deeper level, gratitude journaling helps unwire any negative patterns you may have. By keeping a journal, you develop a practice that keeps you accountable to getting the results you want while developing appreciation and enjoying happier days.

How CBT impacted me…

Cognitive behavioral therapy is structured around the idea that our thoughts influence our feelings and behavior. The idea being that if we can change our  reaction to the thoughts we can in turn change our behavior. Over time something that used to be triggering no longer is, and something that usually would become trigger no longer has the same hold on an individual.

When my anxiety got really bad, I started searching the web for answers on how to cope with anxiety provoking thoughts. I ended up finding lots of information on Cognitive Behavioral Therapy. I started to look for a CBT trained therapist and ended up finding one who uses CBT and Mindfulness. The process was not easy at all, but definitely worth it.  I was able through working hard and being guided by my therapist to challenge my thoughts and ultimately change my perspective.

For example, the idea that I was inadequate would before evoke a response of “I feel inadequate so it must be true” after cognitive behavioral therapy the response changed to “ I accept the presence of this thought, and I know it is just a thought”. The most gratifying experience of cognitive behavioral therapy is when I was able to recognize that I not only had a pattern of negative and self-consuming thoughts, but I had thousands of thoughts. When I was able to observe the other thoughts, I then was able to push the self-consuming thoughts in the same backdrop. I had no response to them, they were just the same as the thousands of other thoughts I had. I started to view my thoughts differently, and was able to watch them come and go with no judgment and no attachment.

I also learned that my thoughts were not connected to the core of who I am as a person. And that the “What if…” is not something that can ever be answered no matter how long and how much time I spent ruminating about the thoughts.

I still have moments of anxiety, but I now have the tools and resources to tackle it much more effectively. My anxiety is no longer crippling, and I am able to live a much more healthier and fulfilling life.

“You are not your mind.”
– Eckhart Tolle