Smart Life

Our Editor’s Honest Review of The Five-Minute Journal

Whereas I train and attempt to eat fruits and veggies day-after-day, that’s at all times been the extent of my identification as a wellness individual. Meditation, affirmations, manifesting—they’ve at all times fallen underneath my umbrella of “to be tried at a later date.” However as my New Yr’s resolutions got here and went and my objectives of focusing extra on my emotional wellness relatively than simply bodily appeared like they wanted to be moved to 2023, I threw a Hail Mary and determined to order The Five-Minute Journal

After seeing it numerous occasions on Instagram and TikTok and even in my buddies’ houses, I believed {that a} fast journal entry day-after-day was one thing that even I may sustain with within the identify of being properly. In any case, who can’t spare 5 minutes a day to be a bit of extra optimistic? After over a month of getting The 5-Minute Journal, the expertise has been one which I didn’t anticipate—to say the least. Right here’s precisely how the method went for me and whether or not or not the magic so many promise rang true.


What’s the 5-Minute Journal?

The 5-Minute Journal is a gratitude journal with six months’ price of every day entries (that are undated). Earlier than it dives into the precise journal pages, there are a number of chapters explaining the logic behind the journal and one of the best practices in reaching effectiveness in your journaling. It suggests journaling for 5 days in a row to get into the behavior and to provide you with a plan on the way you’re going to attain it. 

On the primary web page of the 5-Minute Journal, it claims to be “the only, best factor you are able to do day-after-day to be happier,” which is daring however not fully unfounded given how useful gratitude journaling claims to be. 

Every day incorporates the next prompts:

To be crammed out very first thing within the morning:

  • I’m grateful for…
  • What would make immediately nice?
  • Every day affirmation

To be crammed out proper earlier than you go to mattress:

  • Highlights of the day
  • What did I study immediately?

The premise of the journal focuses on one factor: optimistic pondering. It goals that can assist you shift your mentality and construct the behavior of fascinated with the nice relatively than the dangerous, which is why you begin and finish your day with it. It even suggests holding the journal in your nightstand subsequent to your mattress so you may write the second you get up. It’s meant to be a sensible strategy to implement optimistic pondering into your days in a non-daunting, approachable method.


My morning journaling

Whereas all of this sounded straightforward sufficient once I learn the steered directions, it goes with out saying that it’s a lot simpler mentioned than finished. I believed holding my journal on my desk in my bed room could be sufficient, however I did want to maneuver it to my nightstand to really get into the behavior of doing it very first thing after I wakened.

I’ve by no means finished gratitude journaling of any sort, so I used to be in for a impolite awakening on round day three. Whereas it was straightforward at first with primary gratitudes like mornings with my canine, espresso, and the solar being out, developing with three new ones each morning grew to become tough—quick. I needed to dive deeper and actually mirror on how I used to be feeling and what positivity I may pull from the day earlier than. It took a little bit of apply, however pulling gratitudes from a deeper place took a degree of instinct that I don’t ordinarily pull from on a day-to-day foundation. Issues like “espresso” shortly become issues that meant extra, like “waking up excited to do my job immediately.”

The gratitude portion shortly made me see simply how useful gratitude journaling may be. I discovered myself looking for optimistic issues to write down down all through my day to fill out my journal the subsequent morning, which truly simply made me take a look at the positives all through the day extra general. 

I’m traditionally not a lot of an emotional wellness lady, so my actual problem got here from needing to fill out the affirmation portion of my journal. Though the journal was fully personal and only for me, I discovered it fascinating that my intuition was to really feel a bit of embarrassed and tacky when writing down a brand new affirmation day-after-day. After taking a deep dive into affirmation concepts, it undoubtedly acquired simpler for me and was a complete new strategy to give myself a bit of enhance all through the day. It was one factor to write down it down, however one other to consider it and really affirm myself all through the day, however with a bit of little bit of apply (and writing every down on the web page of my every day planner day-after-day as properly), it acquired loads simpler, and it acquired me into pondering of myself in a extra optimistic method—one thing that I wrestle to prioritize. Arising with a brand new affirmation day-after-day made me push myself into fascinated with the components of me that I actually love and what I’d wish to consider about myself.

Lastly, and perhaps most significantly, the “What would make immediately nice” immediate made me take into consideration my day in a method that I usually don’t. My days are normally dictated by one factor: my to-do checklist. To start with days, that a part of my journal could be full of issues like “get forward on X undertaking” or “go to Y exercise class.” Shortly, I spotted that isn’t what truly makes my day nice. As somebody who tends to be achievement-oriented (Enneagram Three child), I typically equate my happiness with what I understand as my successes; if I’m productive and reaching what I must in a day, meaning I’ll be joyful, proper? Not essentially. Taking a second in my morning to consider what would actually carry me pleasure was sufficient reflection to prioritize myself in a complete new method. Moderately than it being checking one thing off my to-do checklist, it advanced into issues like “taking a stroll with out music or a podcast” to spend a while with myself, which made me really feel way more fulfilled all through the day than any to-do-list job ever may. 


My nighttime journaling

Very like my morning journaling, my nighttime journaling actually solely caught once I saved it subsequent to my nightstand and did it proper earlier than I turned my mild off to fall asleep. 

Much more so than the morning, the nighttime journaling was really a check in positivity. On a day that was “good,” it was straightforward to fill out my favourite components of the day, however on a day that I used to be going to mattress pressured and overwhelmed, it may take some digging. As somebody who doesn’t usually problem myself like this, it was unimaginable how taking these couple of minutes to attempt to consider one thing good in a nasty day made me alter my mindset to be extra optimistic as a complete. And one of the best half? Even on these not-so-good days, I undoubtedly may consider one thing that I discovered, which made every part I wouldn’t have most well-liked to occur a bit extra worthwhile. 

Seeing the nice in day-after-day isn’t one thing that most individuals do, however writing about it and attempting to consider one thing optimistic in even your worst day helps to not dwell on the dangerous fairly a lot. And sometimes, after I turned out the lights, I discovered myself attempting to consider extra good, whereas I ordinarily would most likely have been stressing in regards to the dangerous. It made small issues like a stranger complimenting me or making myself a very good meal really feel greater than singular moments, and my mind adjusted to hunt these issues out eons greater than I ever had prior to now.


The decision

Over the previous month, this journal really has modified the best way I feel greater than I ever thought it may. Moderately than needing to make one big change to really feel and assume in a different way, it was about making one singular, small change all through day-after-day and that consistency including up. I used to be capable of persist with it a lot simpler than I’ve been capable of persist with anything (taking a look at you, meditation podcasts!), and mindfulness turned from a chore into one thing I actually seemed ahead to each morning and evening.

Within the midst of the craziness of labor and social plans and life typically, there has by no means been a cause to essentially decelerate, mirror, and dig a bit deeper than my regular days required me to—however this journal gave it to me. Moderately than going to mattress fascinated with what I wanted to do the subsequent day, I used to be spending time pondering of the nice from the day I simply skilled, which was a attain of success I by no means believed I’d truly obtain with this. As soon as my six months are full, I do know I’ll be ordering one other one to proceed my journaling ritual, and it’ll proceed to make day-after-day just a bit bit higher—and if I can do it, anybody can.



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