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gratitudejournal

What I learnt from a 4 yrs old gratitude list?

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My colleague Kaja ( who helps me bring these emails to you) has a 4 yr old son.

Sometimes she shares things that he says innocently. I find wisdom in them and that brings a smile on my face. Let me share some that may bring a smile on your face too.

She writes in her gratitude journal every night. Because her son is 4, he does not understand the word “Gratitude”, so she tells him that she writes things that bring a smile on her face.

(That is why he has given me the title of “Boss of all smiles” as my picture is at the back of Stress to Joy Guided Gratitude Journal that she writes in)

So, when she is writing, she also asks him what brings a smile on his face. He comes up with responses like:
  • “Arms to give snuggles,
  • Mouth to show a smile,
  • Eyes to see mother’s smile,
  • Ears to hear sister’s laugh
  • Toys to play with,
  • T.V. to watch,
  • Music to dance to,
  • The sun that wakes me up”.

I thought, hmm, I have done my gratitude journaling for last 14 + yrs but never thought Sun as a blessing. Not only it gives us light and heat, but our existence also would not have been possible without it.

The other time, he said; “My tummy is not hungry because I have this banana.”

It made me realize,  what a blessing it is to have enough food to eat so we don’t feel hungry.

Did you know some 795 million people in the world do not have enough food to lead a healthy active life? That’s about one in nine people on earth. The vast majority of the world’s hungry people live in developing countries. Among which 12.9 percent of the population is undernourished.

According to the USDA, this is not just a problem in the developing world. Even in America, more than 41 million people face hunger, including 13 million children.

You may know that Muslims have recently finished their month of Ramzaan when they fast for 30 days. One of the purposes of fasting is to develop the realization of how important the blessing of food is. And also to develop empathy for people who don’t have it.

Most traditions have some ways of giving thanks for the food.

I grew up saying “Shukar” which means thanks at the end of each meal. Although I write about being grateful for the food in my journal every morning, sometimes I forget at work when I am eating during a meeting or on the go.

Since my colleague has shared this list with me, I have become more cognizant. I have decided to make special efforts to say my thanks every time I eat, even when I eat during a meeting or on the go.

So, what brings smiles on your face?

Would you start asking your kids what brings smiles on their faces that they could be grateful for?

Would you start saying thanks for the food you get every day?

Let me know what you do to keep your focus on things you have rather than things you don’t? Gratitude practice in any form can train your brain to be positive. It can help you be happy and grateful no matter what life presents to you.

PS: If you would like your copy of Stress to Joy Guided gratitude journal to help you start, resume or take your gratitude practice to the next level, you can get it at drrozina.com or Amazon.

Dedicated to your health and happiness,

Dr. Rozina

#1 Best Selling Author, Speaker, and Psychiatrist
www.drrozina.com

Join me on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, or sign up for my newsletter

The Stress to Joy® program is available in
eBook,

Print Book 

Audio Book

Online Course

Guided Gratitude Journal

I share many tools and techniques that I have found to be helpful. They are not intended to replace treatments. Please seek treatment from licensed medical or health professionals as needed. I change all names for privacy.

grateful vision

Vision Board Planning

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Pat, a friend, shared her frustration with me; “How can I be confident and affirm so that I have the best job possible when I am receiving only rejections to all my job applications?”

She was trying to recover from her condition and get back to a good job.

Vision board helps her visualize what she wanted in life.

She was having difficulty feeling confident about her ability to achieve her goals.

When Pat faced the above dilemma, I advised her to add a Grateful Achievement and change her vision board to Grateful Vision using advanced gratitude concept. She took a manila folder with two plain sheets of paper pasted/stapled on each side. One side was her Grateful Achievement, and the other side was Grateful Vision.

Before doing this exercise, she was feeling like a total failure. She could not feel the confidence that she could achieve her goals so was having a hard time putting energy in her goal/intention/vision. Using this technique helped her.

The next time I saw her, she had a big smile on her face. Her energy was palpable. She felt confident yet humble.  When she did this as part of her daily practice, her goals remained in front of her, and she kept on taking deliberate steps towards her goal. She was close to achieving success.

I shared the step # 1 in the blog Grateful Achievement. Here, I share step #2, Grateful Visions.

As I mentioned in the previous blog, for visualizing her goals, Pat had made a vision board.

What is a vision board?  

A vision or dream board is a collage or poster that you can make with pictures/images/words – affirmations of one’s dreams and desires, designed to serve as a source of inspiration and motivation and to use the law of attraction to attain goals. It is a potent tool that has been popularized by the documentary ‘The Secret’ by Rhonda Burns. The power of the vision board lies in its ability to help people discover and visualize their dreams. When they regularly affirm and visualize as if they have achieved those goals, it increases their chances of achieving them.

What are affirmations and visualizations?

When you say a positive, short statement in the present tense, your intentions—as if you have already achieved them—are called affirmations.

Visualization merely is seeing those things in your mind’s eye as vividly as if they are real, and as if they already happened.

Because your brain is prepared for achieving goals, these affirmations and visualizations are like seeds that you sow in your mind’s field. They provide a trailer to the mind for what you want so it can move toward your desires.

Have you ever felt a little flustered when you turn on the TV and a movie is playing, but you have no idea what it’s about?

Sometimes it is okay, but most of the time your brain takes a few moments to make sense of what is going on in the story. Your mind likes it better when it has some idea. When you check out the name, description, or trailer, your brain gets ready, knows what is coming, and can more thoroughly enjoy the movie. Similarly, before doing anything, if you set an intention and visualize the destination, it gives your brain a framework, a blueprint, and a file folder in which to put the information.

Power of Attraction:

When the documentary ‘The Secret’ came out in 2006, I did not question the main idea, “power of attraction”, because I knew the power of affirmations and visualizations. I liked Bob Proctor’s suggestion in that documentary when he suggested writing affirmations with the prompt, “I am so happy and grateful that I have…[whatever you want, but don’t yet have].”

I tried his suggestion, but I had one little problem. My logical mind could not accept the notion of “Just believe it, even if your mind questions it” as one of the speakers suggested in that documentary. It felt like a lie, and if my mind doesn’t accept what I say, then those words hold no power for me.

How can I believe that I have enough money in my bank account when my bank statement shows otherwise?

How can I think that I can pay the bills when I’m getting collection calls? Just imagine what would happen if you assumed that you had enough money, and you wrote a check despite your bank account not having sufficient funds to cover it. Of course, the check would bounce, and you would have to pay the bank fees.

As I was contemplating the issue, I came across the phrase “Advanced Gratitude” written somewhere, and I had an “aha moment”.  I thought about the fact that I pay rent to live the next month in an apartment, pay for the groceries before taking them home, and write “thanking you in advance” when asking someone for a favor in a letter. What if I give thanks for the things I want before getting them? My mind accepted that.

So, I started writing in my journal, “I offer advanced gratitude that I am or I have…” whatever I wanted. That was my affirmation.

For example, “I offer advanced gratitude that I am happy that my books have made a difference in more than a million people.” Or “I can sketch a book with the stamp: 1 Million Copies Sold.”

I started to see it in my mind’s eye as if it had happened, and it became a powerful visualization for me. Sometimes those things came true for me within days, and sometimes they came true after years, and some have still not come true.

Either they are not right for me or the right time has not come.

This belief is very important to keep the positive benefit of this technique; otherwise, it can be disappointing not to get what you want.  

From a logical viewpoint, I can see that my writing keeps reminding me of my intention and motivates me to keep taking action toward my desired goals. This action combined with intention increases the chances of achieving those objectives.

Just adding the phrase “I offer advanced gratitude” before Bob Proctor’s suggested prompt allowed my logical mind to accept my visualization.

Since then, I have been using this prompt as a part of my daily journal, and I reap the benefits of affirmations and visualizations without my mind questioning it.

You can make your grateful vision by adding the prompt AGF (Advanced Gratitude For). Visualize what you want in life or where you want to be and write it after this prompt. Be specific and see in your mind’s eye how it would feel when you achieve what you want. You may also sketch or paste a picture of it.

I shared what she wrote for her grateful achievement in the previous article. For her grateful visions, she wrote:

I am grateful in advance that I am/I have

  • overcome my condition
  • completed college
  • become a coach
  • am the best mother to my kids

If you use this tool, you will get closer and closer to your success with confidence and humility.

Go ahead make your list of Grateful Visions

 

Don’t miss out! For tools to help reduce your stress and maximize your joy sent right to your email, sign up today. In addition, you will get an instant download of a 1-minute relaxation exercise for busy people.

Let me know what you found most useful and if you have any questions.

 

Dr. Rozina

#1 Best Selling Author, Speaker, and Psychiatrist
www.drrozina.com

Join me on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, or sign up for my newsletter

The Stress to Joy® program is available in
eBook,

Print Book 

Audio Book

Online Course

Guided Gratitude Journal

 

I share many tools and techniques that I have found to be helpful. They are not intended to replace treatments. Please seek treatment from licensed medical or health professionals as needed. I change all names for privacy.

Benefits of Gratitude

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Research at UC Berkeley found that a gratitude practice can help you and your brain heals

That may be no surprise to anyone who’s studied all the benefits of practicing gratitude. But there was one thing I read in their research that was shocking which few people know about yet…

Changes in Brain:

It turns out a gratitude practice creates changes in the brain- the medial prefrontal cortex. This area is associated with social cognition and behavior. The most surprising part is that these changes lasted even three months after the study period.

Fascinating!

Indeed, many studies over the past decade have found that people who consciously count their blessings tend to be happier and less depressed.  The finding of changes in the brain means a gratitude practice could potentially have long-lasting benefits for our brain and mental health.

Ways to Heal Faster:

With the pressure of our fast-paced world, we are always looking for ways to heal faster and derive the greatest possible benefit from treatment in the shortest amount of time.

Therefore, many healthcare providers, especially in the mental health, are using research-backed approaches to complement psychological counseling with additional activities that are not too taxing for our clients but yield high results, and gratitude practice is one such activity.

My Experience:

Over the years I have used this technique to complement treatment for many of my clients and seen its power. I have also seen its benefits in my own life as I have practiced gratitude journaling for more than 14 years. I started after I broke my right hand and realized the importance of my left hand. (Read more about my story in the book “Stress to Joy”.)

Now, to help more people get educated, motivated and guided to start, resume or deepen their gratitude practice, I have developed this tool;“Stress to Joy Guided Gratitude Journal

Would you like to get a copy for yourself, your colleagues and your clients?

It is now available atAmazon.com. I have also arranged for special discounts on bulk order (5 or more) for my friends at https://stresstojoy.com/order-gratitude-journal-special

Don’t miss out! For tools to help reduce your stress and maximize your joy sent right to your email, sign up today. In addition, you will get an instant download of a 1-minute relaxation exercise for busy people.

Let me know what you found most useful and if you have any questions.

 

Dr. Rozina

#1 Best Selling Author, Speaker, and Psychiatrist
www.drrozina.com

Join me on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, or sign up for my newsletter

The Stress to Joy® program is available in
eBook,

Print Book 

Audio Book

Online Course

Guided Gratitude Journal

 

I share many tools and techniques that I have found to be helpful. They are not intended to replace treatments. Please seek treatment from licensed medical or health professionals as needed. I change all names for privacy.

How to Transform Your Life

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My friend Sam recently expressed her surprise when I showed her STJ Guided Gratitude Journal, “Oh, I thought this was just a pretty journal with empty lines. I did not know that there are so many instructions and inspirations to transform your life available. It feels like it can help many people like me. I will definitely try it.”  

So let me share what is inside this journal. This journal is a hybrid of book and journal. It consists of seven components as follows.

1.  Reasons behind each prompt:

When you know the “why” of something, it helps to you get motivated to do it. Therefore I have added the explanation and reasons for the practice and each prompt.

 

2. Examples:

I usually ask my patients to share three things they feel grateful for while I am writing their prescriptions. Some people have a hard time initially. Examples make it easier.

Therefore, I will share some examples for each prompt to get you thinking.

 

3. Flexibility to write short or long entry:

Some days, you’re going to be filled with motivation and want to dive deep into your gratitude practice.

And let’s be honest, there’s probably going to be some days when you’re busy with your life and doing that much could feel overwhelming.

This journal gives you the choice of how much you want to journal each day.

If you simply want to do the minimum, that’s perfect!

And on days you want to do more, you have extra space and additional prompts to connect with a sense of gratitude and joy deeply.

 

4. Invitation to doodle:

Do you like to doodle? One person told me that she feels almost guilty for doodling when she “should be” doing work.

New research supports the benefits of doodling and expressing creatively about your life.

Therefore, you will find a sketch/doodle/brain dump/visualize zone on alternate pages of the journal – a blank space without lines.

You may draw something that you are grateful for or something that is your vision/goal. I want you to doodle or color or paste some pictures of it.

This exercise is to make you sketch the floating bubble exercise (an exercise to be able to sleep when the mind is too active as described in ‘Stress to Joy’ book), brain dumps of your ideas, priorities of the day or merely write free flow.

The open space is to invite you to do whatever you desire that day.



5. Thought Provoking Quotes:

Good quotes usually inspire your life and stimulate thinking. Therefore, I have scattered a few of my favorite inspirational quotes throughout the Journal.

 

 

6. Gradual Instructions:

When I wrote in my journal for the first time, I started with only a few words. Over time it evolved as I introduced different prompts and variations.

When I teach this technique to my patients, I start with the basics and gradually add more prompts to deepen the practice.

This journal is designed to guide you in the same way. The prompts expand gradually to help you master each set in your life.

 



7. Other Resources:

Last but not least, I’ve compiled and shared a list of resources that I have developed to benefit you in acquiring the optimum mindset for health and happiness.

If you would like to use these powerful tools, all you have to do is keep this journal or any journal or notebook by your bedside, in your pocket, or your purse.

Every morning, before you get busy with the daily demands of your life, or evening before retiring to bed, pick up the journal and write.


My friend just sent me this note; “I love the Stress to Joy Guided Gratitude Journal. I was thinking about trying a gratitude journal for some time, and I am glad I started here. The thought-provoking quotes and the guided text has motivated me and provided me with a perspective which is helping me express my feelings and focus on the positives. The simple act of journaling has enabled me to see the meaning of events going on around me and helps me create meaning in my own life; as a result, I feel much happier, calmer and more grateful for everything. “

I hope it helps you too and I look forward to hearing from you how it has helped to transform your life.

Grab your copy of this journal at Amazon http://a.co/d/iNHJgzp

For more information about the journal or bulk order please visit https://stresstojoy.com/order-gratitude-journal-special

Don’t miss out! For tools to help reduce your stress and maximize your joy sent right to your email, sign up today. In addition, you will get an instant download of a 1-minute relaxation exercise for busy people.

Let me know what you found most useful and if you have any questions.

 

Dr. Rozina

#1 Best Selling Author, Speaker, and Psychiatrist
www.drrozina.com

Join me on FacebookTwitterLinkedIn, or sign up for my newsletter

The Stress to Joy® program is available in
eBook,

Print Book 

Audio Book

Online Course

Guided Gratitude Journal

 

I share many tools and techniques that I have found to be helpful. They are not intended to replace treatments. Please seek treatment from licensed medical or health professionals as needed. I change all names for privacy.


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STRESS TO JOY by DR ROZINA


21 DAYS of STRESS TO JOY