10 Benefits of Journaling Gratitude

By Carol McClain @carol_mcclain

“Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change” James 1:17.

According to Robert A. Emmons in Gratitude Works! (page 10)studies have given quantifiable benefits from keeping a gratitude journal.

Benefits of journaling your gratitude:
  1. people who do are 25% happier
  2. they sleep 1/2 hour longer each night
  3. they exercise 33% more each week
  4. hypertensives lower their bp by 10%
  5. dietary fat drops up to 20%
  6. they feel more connected to others
  7. their relationships improve
  8. they are more altruistic
  9. they are more loving
  10. they feel closer to God

Life is short. We’re not promised we will wake up tomorrow or make it home from our Sunday drive. Do we want to live our brief lives deprived?

I used to journal copiously. After hearing how it can help you overcome depression or anger or other negative feelings, I decided to try it. These journals never made me feel better.

Then, on the occasions I reread them, they resurrected the pain I experienced. They reminded me of the wrongs done to me. I also considered the brevity of life. I couldn’t imagine my daughter finding these journals and reading one of them.

I tossed them, and haven’t missed them.

I’ve been blogging about being thankful for about two weeks now. In this brief time, I’ve seen a turn around in my mood and my outlook on life. The days are brighter, and I’m more anxious to relish them.

The Bible admonishes us in Philippians 4:8, “Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable–if anything is excellent or praiseworthy–think about such things.”

Do you want a better life?

Why not try gratitude journaling? You’ll fulfill Philippians 4:8

Today I’m grateful for:

  1. Cherokee Caverns. They’re all decorated for Christmas. Not only do you see all the cavern delights like stalagmites and stalactites, but the lights enhance them. The children frolic and parents take pictures. Really fun.
  2. Date night with hubby. Life’s been full of knee surgery and nursing and tending our home. Tonight, we ate out on a gift card I won. Neither one of us glanced at our phones during dinner.
  3. Naps. I could barely keep my eyes open during church. I came home and took a nap. How decadent. Divine. Heavenly.
  4. A fantastic Christmas breakfast at church. The food was yummy and plentiful, and I totally overate.
  5. Christmas lights in Tennessee. The people here may fear snow, but they decorate with abandon. It’s a fairyland outside.

Count your blessings. Write them down. It’ll turn your life around.



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