2016 Everyday Gratitude Diary
The story of the project
I’ve struggled with depression for a number of years, and I have found that practising gratitude—that is, actively thinking about the things I am grateful for in my day—has helped to alleviate a lot of my symptoms.
Gratitude is an amazing thing: it can lower stress, help alleviate anxiety and depression, and promote contentment, acting as a counterbalance to our stress-filled world.
At first, I didn’t want to believe that something so simple could be so effective. But strengthening my gratitude muscles has made the dark times far fewer and far less intense. It has also made me notice the details of my life, and has caused me to realise how many wonderful things and people I come into contact with every day.
I developed a way to make daily gratitude a seamless part of my life and I want to share it with other people too, so they can enjoy the benefits of a life lived with gratitude. I designed it to be beautiful and fun—something I’d love to have with me and use all the time.
So here it is: the 2016 Everyday Gratitude Diary!
What’s in the Diary?
Cover: inky blue hardcover
Interior: black ink on 100 gsm matt white paper, with a ribbon bookmark
(note: the above is just a mockup as the diary hasn’t been printed yet!)
Day to day
You can use it just like you would a normal day planner/diary. There’s lots of blank space for appointments and To Dos. In addition, at the end of each day, there is a prompt and space for you to write down one thing you were grateful for that day. Even if you’re having a crappy day, there’s sure to be at least one good thing in it!
At the end and beginning of each month, there is space to stop and take stock. You get a chance to look back over the month and reflect on how you’ve been feeling and what you were most grateful for. You also get a chance look ahead and think about what things you’re going to do to look after yourself this coming month: self-care is really important—especially as we get busier and busier. Maybe you could book a massage. Maybe plan a walk at a beach. Maybe plan to have coffee with friends.
End of the year
Isn’t it weird how a year goes by and you forget half the things that have happened? At the end of the diary there is a spot for you to reflect on and write down the things you were most grateful for throughout the year. Now you have a perfect little time capsule of all the things you did and were grateful for in 2016!
Scattered throughout the pages of the diary are illustrations by my good friend, Jessica Green. They’re on a range of whimsical topics (a wombat tea party, anyone?), and might make you smile. But they’ve also been left as outlines so you can colour them in if you like. Grab those coloured pencils and make these drawings your own!
Why do I need this diary?
– A strengthened immune system and lower blood pressure
– Improved sleep
– Better resilience
– Stronger relationships
And grateful people are more helpful, altruistic and compassionate!
The colouring-in is beneficial too—colouring-in for adults has been recently shown to stimulate creativity, help you relax and, yep, even relieve anxiety and depression symptoms.
If you love paper diaries…
You will love this one! It’s going to be beautiful and one you will enjoy using.
But I don’t use a paper diary!
Now, I know a lot of you might own smartphones and not use a paper diary anymore. Even if that’s the case, The Everyday Gratitude Diary is still for you: you can use it as more of a journal than an appointment diary. You might like to keep it by your bed and jot down the things that happened during the day before you go to sleep. The very act of writing makes you slow down, engages your brain and helps with contemplation.