31 Days Of Thankfulness project is DONE ✔️
My heart is full. Each of the 31 hexagons on this sheet represents one day and together they form a heart shape and one full month of gratitude.
For those of you, who are not familiar with it, I committed to sharing what I am thankful for each day for the full month of January. I shared my posts on Instagram with #31DaysToBeThankful and I created Instagram Stories each time I wrote on my heart sheet. You can grab this free printable sheet from 31 Days Of Thankfulness post.
And here's how it went...
31 Days Of Gratitude Journaling
This was the FIRST time EVER I participated in anything like this and I surprised myself by lasting till the end!
At first, I was scared. I knew it would take a lot of my time to shoot the Insta Story each day, then also to post about it, try to be creative with the images, and even just to caption them. That's already quite a lot.
I also wanted to truly PARTICIPATE, and hopefully, to receive the real benefits of daily gratitude journaling. And for that, I would have to open up a bit... and that's the SCARIEST part of all!
I am an introvert. I have a real hard time speaking about myself. It always leaves me drained and feeling vulnerable. This just seemed like too much.
But I needed to step out of my comfort zone and try my best.
So how did it go?
It made me tap into my creativity on a different level and I love that. Yes, it took some extra time but I immensely enjoyed the daily mini photoshoots and video shoots, experimenting with photo techniques and my equipment.
The checklist junkie in me definitely got satisfaction from seeing my thankfulness sheet fill up more and more each passing day. There's nothing better than seeing progress as you go along.
It was hard to open up and write about my personal life sometimes. I always paused before hitting that post button, doubting myself a little... are people going to like this? Like me? Am I boring? I hope that those who followed the posts throughout January got to know me on a bit more personal level. But in the end, the thing that kept me going was the fact that I am not doing this for anyone but myself. Be genuine and true to yourself... and to the process... and forget about everything else.
That's when you reap the rewards...
The Benefits of Daily Gratitude
I had an amazing month! By investing my energy into the gratitude attitude DAILY, I left very little room for fixating on what would normally be stressful situations. For example, even the fact that my computer almost died and I had to get a brand new one, at the most inconvenient time, really didn't affect me as much as it could have. Having an e-commerce store means your computer is your third arm! You can't operate without it. That day, I simply accepted the fact that this "tech-drama" is happening, I can't reverse it, anger and stress will not solve my issue so I might as well start focusing on the solution and get going with it. Yes, it will set me back by a few days but in the end, I will have a new computer. And that's something actually worth getting excited about! Count your blessings. Look at the bigger picture.
And I think that's what living with gratitude does. One of the true benefits must be then that you gain the abundance attitude. You start recognizing all the good things around you, small and big, and the more you notice them, your mindset changes and all the other stuff diminishes in importance.
So in the end, did it transform me? I'm not sure. I think it's too early to say. But it was definitely a very positive experience and that's all I could hope for in one month. I think a personal transformation happens over time as you accumulate experiences such as this. As time passes you may not see the subtle shifts in your mindset, but one day you stop, reflect and you realize - you are who you are because of all those experiences you've had so far. Your job then - you owe it to yourself - is to create as many positive experiences as you can. Stuff that builds you up and contributes to your personal growth. And for that reason, practicing gratitude daily, even if just for a month, is worth a solid try.
I am continuing to record my gratitude each day now, although I am now doing it in private. I am happy I did my 31 Days Of Thankfulness and January was the perfect month to do it because it set such a great tone for the rest of the year.
It gave me yet another power tool in my arsenal of mental tools, designed to help me deal with what comes my way in life. I am hanging my completed sheet on display in my home office because I want a reminder of this month. Seeing it will help me continue with my gratitude journaling, hopefully forming it into a new habit.
Comment below if you practice gratitude and tell me how it impacts your life. I would love to know how your journal, what tools you use, and any other thoughts you would like to share about practicing gratitude 😊