Starting The Day Grateful

I made a focused effort this year to be more consistent with my journaling, and it seems to be working!  I’ve been writing 6 days per week since the beginning of 2023!  All I needed to do was weave journaling into a part of my daily morning routine.  Who knew it was that simple?

One thing I’ve been doing to start my journaling is to write 3 things that I’m grateful for.  I’ve heard a lot of people suggest that, so I thought I’d give it a try.  It’s amazing after a few weeks how many things you have to be grateful for.  We all know that, but it’s different when you actually see them written down.

I’ve enjoyed recalling things I’m grateful for when I journal in the morning. Not only is it a good reminder of how much I have to be grateful for, it also points me in the right direction mentally every morning.  When I start my day with thoughts of gratitude, it feels like I’m setting my mind up to be grateful all day, which is right where I want to be. 


Looking For Excuses

It’s so easy to find an excuse to get out of doing something you don’t want to do.  Have you ever thought of looking for excuses to do what you know you should be doing?  

For example, maybe you go to the gym every morning when you wake up.  However, on this particular morning, it’s dark, cold, and rainy out when you wake up.  The easy excuse to get out of going to the gym is, “It’s cold and wet outside, but it’s nice and warm in bed.  I’m going to skip the gym today and go tomorrow.” 

At this point, you could also look for an excuse to go to the gym, regardless of the weather.  Your excuse to do what you know you should do, might be, “It’s kind of crappy out, but I’m already awake, and I’ll feel good once I’m done.  There really isn’t a good reason not to go.”

Looking for excuses to follow through, instead of mailing it in, is  a way to reframe the discussions we often have with ourselves when we’re trying to take the easy route.  Often times we just need to give ourselves a little pep talk, or light a fire for ourselves.  And often, a good excuse is just what we need. 


Think, for a moment, of all the things that people can have differing opinions about.  The list is endless!  Topics range from volatile ones like pollical leaning and religion to more innocuous ones like music preference, being a morning or evening person, or your favorite flavor of ice cream. 

Now think of the people you know.  How many of them do you have the exact same opinions on every topic with?  Zero?  Yeah, me too.

With so many things to be divided over, it’s important that we are mindful of what we actually allow to drive wedges in our relationships.  Do we really want to shut someone down or vilify them over minor differences?  Do we really want our radars up looking for reasons to be divided, versus looking for what unites us?  Do we want others looking us with an eye toward division?

Leading with an eye toward division comes with a high price.  We miss out on opportunities to learn more about others.  In some cases, we drive wedges between those closest to over insignificant differences.  What a sad realization it would be to look back on such a life, and see all the division we’ve created, because all we were seeing were differences versus people.

A Quick Thought On Foundations

What foundation do you build your life on?  What grid do you run your behaviors, decisions and actions through?  For me, that foundation/grid is Scripture.  More specifically, the Bible. 

When I didn’t have a specific foundation or grid, what usually guided my decisions, behaviors, and actions was emotion.  Defaulting to emotions didn’t work too well for me, because my actions were based more on what felt best in the moment rather than a foundational values based decision. 

Even though I have Scripture as my foundation, I still need to choose to follow it and apply what it says in my life.  Although it can be challenging, I’ve found that Scripture provides me with a very solid foundation for making wise decisions.  A much more stable foundations than emotions alone.