Reflection Activity: Gratitude Journals

“Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” – Anonymous

By working with your colleagues, youth group or others to create gratitude journals, you can set up an opportunity to use the power of gratitude to change mindsets.

Time Needed: 20 – 30 minutes

Group Size: Any

Materials: Blank journals or notebooks (any kind will work!), markers, pens and other items for decoration

Directions: Share with your group that gratitude is a powerful tool that can have a huge impact in your life. Explain that there is scientific research that shows that expressing gratitude can lead to being more optimistic, happier and even healthier!

Distribute blank journals to your group and encourage them to spend a few minutes decorating them with words, phrases, colors or designs that make them happy – this journal is for them alone. No one else will read or write in this journal, so it can be designed however the individual would like it to look. Ask the group to think about how they would each like their individual books to be structured. Would they like to dedicate a page to each day? Would they like to draw lines or boxes like a calendar on the pages?

Give them a few minutes to use supplies you’ve provided to decorate the journal.

Encourage the group to take their books home and write one thing in their journal each day that they are grateful for.

We hope that you find this activity helpful in reflecting on memories and identifying the things for which you are thankful. As always, GUIDE staff are grateful for you! Thank you for making our jobs a little bit brighter!

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