Written By: Mari Rossi, Student Parent
For a close friend’s birthday a couple of year’s ago I decided to give her an ambitious present: the real possibility of increased sustained happiness! A lofty goal for a birthday present, I know, but one that is supported by science these days and cost me only about $30 (and that’s because I chose the fancy options!). I gave my friend a blank journal, a pretty pen and wrote on the first page:
Gratitude Journal- Every night write 3-7 things you are grateful for.
I have taken up the habit myself, on and off, over the past few years. A couple of months ago I got back into it, and although it’s not a controlled experiment, I am pretty sure it’s having a significant positive effect on my well-being. The act of consciously bringing awareness to the things that have happened over the course of the day and that you feel grateful for, work on two levels: first, it increases awareness and self reflection and secondly it increases positive emotions by focusing on what went well instead of letting it go unnoticed or dwelling on negative aspects of your day. So why not give it a try? Grab a pad and a pen and place it on your bedside table- try it for a couple of weeks and see for yourself if it increases your well-being!