Keeping a Gratitude Journal

Published: 06-08-2014  | Updated: 14-02-2015

gratitude journal

Starting a gratitude journal can transform your life. Practicing gratitude is a hugely powerful process that brings about a shift in mindset to benefit in all areas of your life, including your health and fitness. 

This article explores the gratitude journal and gives tips on how to start creating your own.

It is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.

Dietrich Bonhoeffer

What is a gratitude journal

A gratitude journal is simply a personal record of things, experiences or people in your life that you’re thankful for.

The process is essentially about paying attention to the good things in life that we normally take for granted and are easily overlooked.

Why keep a gratitude journal

Actually writing gratitudes down forces you to organize your thoughts and dedicate time to thinking them over. This process helps acknowledge what’s important in your life and cultivates a positive mental attitude.

You might be asking yourself ‘what does this have to do with my health and fitness’, but a healthy mind and approach to life is essential if you’re to meet your health and fitness goals. The simple act of saying ‘thank you’ will help transform your state of mind, which positively filters into all areas of your life.

Don't just take our word for it though. The positive effects of gratitude journaling have been observed in scientific studies too, (1) (2) where it was found that generally, those people who recorded their gratitude reported an overall higher sense of well-being, slept better and were reported to have more energy than people who did not.

You might be skeptical that something so simple can have such a profound effect (we were at first too!) but give it a go for 28 days and we think you’ll be surprised.

How to keep a gratitude journal

Keeping a gratitude journal is easy. We’d recommend recording five things that you’re particularly grateful for each week and capture the sentiment in a single sentence. Some suggested topics are shown below;

  • People who’ve had a positive influence on your life or helped shape you as a person

  • Experiences you’ve had

  • Passions and interests

  • Good health

  • Food and drink

  • Material goods or services

  • Money and career success

  • Recent accomplishments and personal bests

  • Places you’ve been

Don’t feel the need to write something unique each time. Keeping a gratitude journal is often very repetitive and it should be a reflection of what you’re thankful for at that time. If you’re thankful for it, add it to your gratitude list!

The most important factor is to build the habit of paying attention to gratitude-inspiring events in your life.

Here’s an example gratitude entry:

I am grateful for…

  1. The dinner my parents cooked me this evening

  2. My new dip belt that I used to get a personal best

  3. My coworker who helped me understand a formula I was stuck on

  4. The beautiful weather on my run this morning

  5. You reading this article

Recording your gratitudes

You can record your gratitudes on paper in a physical journal or online using a spreadsheet / document or specifically designed app.

It’s largely up to personal preference, but there are many advantages to going digital such as increased security, back-ups, and it’s much easier to search and filter your journal.

We have built the ultimate online health and fitness journal app which can also be used to log your gratitudes and best of all it’s completely free. You can find out more and download the app straight to your phone below.

fitstream signup

Thank you for reading.





Always consult your GP before undertaking any form of weight loss, fitness or exercise.