Gratitude Journal January – Keeping a diary

Are all the good intentions that were light and fluffy at the start of the month are still that way? Or have become that noose around your neck? I don’t make too many changes (especially big) at the start of the year. As a rule I’m not in favour of the ‘resolution’, preferring goals, which guide you through life, not just the start of the year.

This blog was started as a sounding board for my thoughts and feelings regarding my mental health and parenting. I hoped I would find the answer of how to raise children who would grow up into happy adults. The answer is a work in progress, as life tends to be. But what has come to the forefront is making my life a positive mental environment for me.

Pictures to words

One of those practices has been my gratitude journal on IG and here as a regular post. And now since the start of the year I have been using a diary to write three things that I am grateful for at the end of a day, as well as my overall mood index (according to my own scale).

diary gratitude journal

Already I have been able to look back through the diary and use it as a memory prompt for happy times, for times I have seen the positive in the negative. I am grateful I can monitor and see the truth of the pattern of my emotions.

diary mood journal

At times I have felt the drag of January, the torment of female hormones and overwhelm of a large scale project. But I can see that beyond all of that, my mood has been stable and positive. I need to know that. The spiralling effect of negative thoughts is a syndrome I am well aware of. And the perception of memory can be deceiving.

New habits

And on top of this I am grateful for being able to keep this up for a whole month! Habits are not a strength of mine. I chose deliberately not to overload myself with lots of new things at the start of January. It is a small step but I need this habit. If I can do one thing, then gradually I can apply this daily discipline to other things too. Perhaps my diary can be a launch pad for other habits too.

Moving into February, I am looking forward to the approach of spring. The anticipation is a positive force for me. Research shows that significant positive psychological benefit from a holiday comes from the anticipation of it, rather than the actual holiday. And I’m guessing that this effect extends to other events. In February I will be planning!

Do you keep a diary? And are you planning anything exciting?

Happy February!

If you know anyone else who might enjoy this, please share

8 Comments Add yours

  1. suzanna says:

    I really love the idea of a gratitude diary. I’ve been trying to keep track of my food/mood but am struggling to keep to it. Well done for completing January.

    1. Alice @ The Filling Glass says:

      I know I don’t always feel like doing it at the end of the day, even though it’s quite easy and I like doing it (where is the sense in that!). Food is quite tough because it can sneak in constantly throughout the day – don’t be hard on yourself, just keep going with what you can. x

  2. Nicola Young says:

    Interesting fact about holidays. Make sense though, as it’s always nice to have something to look forward to. At the moment, I’m getting excited because the mornings and evenings are getting lighter, yeah! It means spring is on the way and it makes getting through these damp, cold days a little easier.

    1. Alice @ The Filling Glass says:

      Oh yes Nicola, I really have noticed the mornings and evenings changing. It feels so good. Can’t wait for a bit more sunshine. xx

  3. Tubbs says:

    I don’t keep a diary, but I do post gratitude lists every so often. Focusing on the positives is a good thing

    1. Alice @ The Filling Glass says:

      We all need positives in our lives! x

  4. maddy@writingbubble says:

    I love looking forward to things. Anticipation is its own reward (although I do like the thing i’m anticipating too!). I’m so relieved it’s February – January was awful here but I’m hopeful of better times ahead. I like your mood tracking idea! xx

    1. Alice @ The Filling Glass says:

      The mood tracking is a revelation I promise you Maddy! I wish you a fabulous February. xx

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