It's no secret that practicing gratitude is a key to success. Some of the world's most successful people swear by it: 

  • Oprah says she kept a gratitude journal for ten years without fail during her ascent to stardom.
  • Entrepreneur Tim Ferriss, who has spent his career studying the habits of top-performers, journals about what he's grateful for as part of his morning routine.
  • Even Sir Richard Branson credits an attitude of gratitude for helping him maintain his sense of optimism.

What's the easiest way to take advantage of the benefits of this powerful practice? Start a gratitude journal. Research shows that writing in a gratitude journal just three times per can boost happiness, make you more creative, and protect you from stress. 

Most experts recommend to get started by simply writing down three to five things you're grateful for everyday. Easy enough, but it can get boring after a while. While it's true that there's no wrong way to practice gratitude, changing up your routine to keep it interesting is also important to making a habit stick

On Psychcentral.com, Psychotherapist Sharon Martin, LCSW recently shared creative prompts to breathe new life into your gratitude journaling.

If your daily gratitude practice has gone stale, here are a few of my favorite prompts from Sharon to reinvigorate it: 

  1. What's something that you're looking forward to?
  2. What's a possession that makes your life easier?
  3. Open your phone or photo album and find a photo that you like. Why are you grateful for this photo? What are you grateful for in the photo?
  4. What's something or someone that makes you feel safe?
  5. What do you like about your job?
  6. How are you able to help others?
  7. What book(s) have taught you a power lesson?
  8. Write about a teacher or mentor who you're grateful for.
  9. What did you accomplish today?
  10. What's one of your personality traits that you're grateful for?
  11. What mistake or failure are you grateful for?
  12. Look around the room and write about everything you see that you're grateful for.

These fun idea help stimulate your brain, engage all the benefits of gratitude, and make sure you have some fun in the process. 

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Published on: Nov 20, 2017
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.