From self-care to manifestation and all that’s woo-woo in between, it’s all too easy to feel overwhelmed by all the things that claim to transform your life in 2020. I’d like to think that I’m a level-headed person that can take things with a pinch of salt and that goes in hard when trying to reach their goals. And if you’ve been reading Daisybutter for any length of time, I hope you can see that to be true. However if there’s one thing that has completely revolutionised my outlook and achievements in life, it has to be my habit of documenting my gratitude.
Gratitude lists and journalling gets a bit of a bad reputation. “How could I possibly find time to note down what I’m grateful for when I’m working hard and trying to make things happen?”
I must admit that I had a brief dalliance with this mindset as well. I remember being 21, fresh-faced, a new graduate from a fashion journalism degree, and desperately trying to find my footing. I was interning at every magazine in London and getting nowhere except from to the bottom of my savings account. I was up every evening writing posts for this blog(!!) I stopped reading. I stopped writing in my journal.
But something changed four years ago. I lost my wonderful Granny, who is still the inspiration behind my Sundaze posts as we spent every Sunday together without fail. And I desperately needed something, anything, to help me find the good in my new life without her. Granny was the sort of woman who found joy everywhere: new seedlings sprouting for the first time, her daily afternoon English tea and M&S yum-yum routine, finding the perfect fish to cook for dinner…
I began writing down something that made me happy every day, and it has made me an endlessly happier and more grateful person. I started writing them on scraps of paper, folding them up and adding them to a big glass Kilner jar, although I now log them in my bullet journal. I share most of these in a fortnightly blog post series, entitled ‘Petite joys’ and I’m pleased it’s encouraged lots of my readers to do the same. We can be so obsessed with moving forward that we forget right where we are is great as well.
Documenting the joys from my everyday and noting my gratitude for the things in my life has been transformative for me. I began to slow my days right down, appreciating everything from the way the sunlight glows down on my morning commute, how it feels to return home to a joyful puppy, the tingly feeling you get when someone remembers something small about you. The big things are definitely worth celebrating, there’s no doubt about that, but the small things are what makes them.
Fast forward a few years and I came across manifestation, thanks to Victoria and her incredible blog, Apartment Number 4. And I realised just why gratitude journalling has been so game-changing for me: practicing gratitude is a huge pillar in manifesting your dream life. I’ve been manifesting all along.
Slow coffee afternoons, languid working days in my personal sanctuary, adventurous travels in places that always end up meaning the world to me, little coincidences that join up to create magic… It’s all a product of my own doing.
Practicing gratitude is certainly something I can’t imagine my life without. Over time, it becomes second-nature, and if you’re unsure how to make it work for you, I’d recommend — oddly — ruminating your days during your morning or evening shower. It’s the perfect time to yourself to think about absolutely everything. Once you step out, make a note in a notebook or on your phone. I document my gratitude on my phone first about 85% of the time! It makes the small, passing moments feel more concrete and it’s a physical act of showing appreciation for your life, no matter how small. Slowly, over time, the small moments that you adored and appreciated the most will knit into the life you’ve always dreamed of; they’ll attract the life you designed.
Do you document your gratitude? How do you do so?