It may have been suggested to you already to start a gratitude list in recovery. This is where, each day, you write down all the good things about your life in a journal. Most people will feel at least a little cynical about this type of exercise, but below we give you six reasons why you may want to try it.
1. A Gratitude List Prevents You from Taking Your New Sober Life for Granted
As long as you remain grateful for your recovery, it would be unlikely that you will relapse. This is because your gratitude will encourage you to keep on doing the right things, as well as discouraging you from putting your sobriety in jeopardy. It is so easy just to take all the improvements in your life for granted, but this will not happen as long as you take action to remain grateful
2. A Gratitude List Increases Your Level of Happiness
Reminding yourself of all the great things in your life will increase your overall level of happiness. The unfortunate thing is that most people are too focused on all the things that are missing from their life, meaning they suffer from a scarcity mentality. If you can switch from thinking about all the things you do have rather than the things you don’t have, it will make you feel much happier.
3. A Gratitude List Makes You More Motivated
If you can see how good your life is now, it will motivate you to keep on making further improvements. This is because you can clearly see how your efforts are leading directly to improvements in your life. If you were not able to acknowledge your progress on a regular basis, it would be very difficult for you to remain motivated. It can be helpful to think of motivation as a type of engine that requires a special kind of fuel; you can look upon gratitude as a high-octane fuel that is perfect for your motivation engine.
4. A Gratitude List Helps You Develop a Positive Outlook
Plenty of evidence abounds that supports the idea that those who are generally positive tend to do much better in life. If you want to get the most out of your recovery, you need to develop this type of outlook. Committing to maintaining a gratitude list will give you plenty of things that allow you to always have a reason to feel positive.
5. A Gratitude List Makes You Easier to Be Around
Keeping a gratitude list actually changes the way you interact in the world. It is not only going to mean you are happier, but it will also mean you have a personality that is very appealing to other people. The reality is that negative individuals struggle in relationships because they can be so hard to be around. If you are grateful for your life, it will make you a joy to be around; you will easily make new friends, and old friends will want to spend time with you.
6. It Can Help You Make It Through the Tough Times in Recovery
There are likely to be periods in recovery when you feel challenged by life. During these times you will to need all the help you can get just to make it through. The fact that you have been maintaining a gratitude list means that you have been putting money in the bank for a rainy day; now that the rainy day has come you get to withdraw your funds, making surviving these bad times much easier.