Life is full of troubles, worries, and woes.
At times, stress will outweigh your happiness, but it doesn’t have to be that way.
Your state of mind is dependent upon where your focus lies.
Find your happiness in the small things and give thanks for them daily. Doing this will help you to keep a positive attitude and feel more energized throughout the day.
There are times when you just don’t feel grateful. The whole world rests on your shoulders. Your boss is asking for more than you can give.
I’ve been there.
Let me tell you, there is a light at the end of the tunnel.
Whether the tunnel ends a few feet from where you stand or a few miles, there is a light. It exists. As long as you keep walking forward, you will eventually see it.
Hi! I’m Cynthia. If you have been here before, welcome back!
If you are new to this site then an introduction is needed.
I am a mom of two tweens with a full time job as a manager for a large food service corporation with a hustle on the side.
A couple of years ago, I became a published author (you can check out my books here). Later, I also founded this site CynthiaBrandel.com.
One day after too many hours at work slaving for the man, I decided I wanted to change my life and work for myself.
To read more about my story click here or click the image below.
Back to the reason why you are here in the first place.
Gratitude Is A State Of Mind
Gratitude isn’t just a feeling. It is a state of being.
You can choose to wake up and say “thank you” first thing or you can curse out the alarm clock, snatch it from your dresser and throw it across the room. (A little extreme, I know, but hey, my youngest son is not a morning person).
I would rather wake up in a positive state of mind rather than a negative one. Wouldn’t you?
Over the past year or two, I have been actively fighting against depression. Because I’m stubborn (as all Taurus are), I refuse to go for treatment.
Instead, I search out more natural ways to treat my illness.
The most effective method I have found is my bullet journal.
I know. You are like “What? A bullet journal isn’t medicine!”
Well, in the general sense, you are right.
But my bullet journal has helped me fight depression more than anything else (I will tell you how in just a bit).
I have been symptom-free for more than 4 months (which is a big victory in my book!)
Related Article: Journaling Through A New Year (My Self Development Plan)
The Morning Pages
One of the most effective weapons against depression is the morning pages.
The morning pages are the first thing (other than coffee) on my daily routine.
The morning pages take the weight off my shoulders. I pour all of my worries, fear, doubts, and prayers into three pages every morning. By the time I finish, I feel liberated.
Getting the clutter out of my mind doesn’t take away all of my problems but it does help to look at them through fresh eyes—to get new insights.
You can snag my morning pages template for FREE here or click the image below.
Related Article: Obtain Mental Clarity in a Few Easy Steps
The inspiration for the morning pages came from Julia Cameron, author of The Artist’s Way. Preview her book for FREE below.
Julia’s main intention was to help artists find a way to clear their mind and inspire their inner muse.
What Do I Put Into The Morning Pages?
You can include anything you want in your pages. Like your bullet journal, the morning pages are designed for you and you alone. They are personal and not to be shared with others.
If you are interested in trying the morning pages yourself and want to learn more about them, I urge you to check out Julia’s book. It was inspiring to me and instrumental in fighting against my depression.
Related Article: Self Improvement The Way To Live Intentionally
Other than the morning pages, I have added a gratitude log into my bullet journal.
There are many different ways you can do this (weekly, daily, monthly).
For me, I wanted to focus on gratitude daily so I added a section to my daily spread.
By focusing on gratitude daily, I start off my day with a positive look and end my day with a positive outlook.
Things To Be Grateful For When You Just Don’t Feel Grateful
There are a lot of times, especially in the evening after a hard day at work, when I don’t feel grateful. I’m too tired to feel anything other than a hot shower and my comfy bed.
However, to keep my focus where it should be, I take a few moments to write down one thing in my bullet journal that I am grateful for.
If I can’t think of something (it must’ve been a really terrible day), then I revert back to the simple things in life.
I know you may think it is strange that I am thankful for the daylight, but when you work in a 6X6 office with no windows and wall to wall paperwork, it can get rather dreary.
If like me, you go to work in the dark and come home in the dark, then you will know why showing gratitude for daylight is a mood booster.
Just to see the sunrise or the sunset is a blessing. Take a moment to enjoy it when you can.
The Basics: Shelter, Food, & Clothes
No everyone has a place to call home. They don’t get 3 square meals a day. They don’t have the luxury of looking into a closet full of clothes and trying to decide what they want to wear.
The basics of living are an absent thought for many of us (myself included). Even though you may struggle financially, or you hate your job and wish you could just quit, you should still show gratitude for what you have.
The ability to get out of bed each morning is a blessing. There are 48.9 million people in the US alone that suffer from some disability (click here to view the study)
That is an astounding number of people who cannot perform the easiest of tasks without some assistance.
Gratitude should be given for all of your abilities, not just the events that happen in your life.
As I mentioned earlier, I tend to go to work in the dark and come home in the dark.
On the weekends, I like to sit on the back porch and listen to the birds.
The winter months are the quietest. All the birds have gone south and even the frogs and the cicadas have gone hibernation.
Sitting outside in the sunshine while listening to the sounds of nature is one way I leave the chaotic world behind and enter a sense of peace and tranquility.
The Smell of Freshly Cut Grass
There are certain smells I enjoy, the smell of freshly cut grass being one of them.
As I said earlier, the simple things bring me joy. I find happiness in the beauty around me— from the bloom of a flower or the song of a bird, all are gifts.
The amount of water a person uses in a day is astonishing. There are countries where clean water is a commodity, and yet I’m able to take a bath in it.
I can go to the sink and turn on the faucet and water comes out. For some, they may have to walk several miles just to pull dirty water up from a well.
Now that I’m thinking about it, the same can be said of groceries.
I can go to the store and buy what I need, while others may not have that ability. They might need to scavage or hunt for their food. They might not know when their next meal will be.
People In Your Life
I don’t believe you meet someone by coincidence. All meetings are purposefully intended.
We are like balls of string rolling around on the floor. Sooner or later we will bump or roll over someone else’s string.
Sometimes our string may become tangled and a life long friendship forms.
At other times, our balls of string may bounce off of each other and separate into opposite directions.
Whenever you meet someone new, you learn something new. It could be as small as a phrase that person says or you may notice a strange behavior.
Your brain will pick up on cues as to who that person is by the clothes they wear, how they walk, how they talk, and so on.
Be grateful for the people you encounter in your life. You never know, they may become someone who will change your life forever.
Although I didn’t finish college, I did and do consider myself an educated person.
No, I’m not the brightest kid in the bunch, but I can hold my own.
Here in America, education comes freely through our schools or youtube or free classes and seminars.
You can learn just about anything if you put your mind to it and are devoted to your goal.
Having an education, knowing how to read, speaking multiple languages, these are the things I am thankful for.
The list could go on and on, but I think you get the picture.
There are many things to show gratitude for.
When you are feeling low and need a pick-me-up, open your bullet journal and look at all the things you have written in your gratitude log.
Remember why you were grateful for these things, and hold them tight in your memory.
You can snag your free gratitude log by clicking here or the image below
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