In recovery, you go through a lot of ups and downs, especially in the first few years as life begins to settle. Sometimes, you may feel a little fed up or frustrated. This too shall pass.  Do you want a secret way to improve your mood, even if you’re having a crummy week? Keeping a gratitude list is an important tool to help you live with a better attitude and outlook. Gratitude can help you re-connect to the big picture and appreciate what you have right now.

“An Attitude of Gratitude” is Important

Gratitude is a way for us to be humble and realize that life isn’t so bad. When you were a kid and you didn’t eat your food, you may have heard an older person grumble about people were starving in North Korea or some other country. Truth be told, we’re all lucky to have a roof over our heads, relative safety when we go outside, and clean, safe, sometimes-delicious food to eat.

Sometimes life seems a little bumpy and we forget how good we have it. Just remember of your last few days of using and think about how different you feel and act today. Life is getting better in recovery, even if it isn’t perfect. You’re growing and changing, and one day soon you’re going to blossom.

There are a lot of things besides addiction that you’re probably going to have to work on. Cleaning up finances, establishing trust and boundaries in relationships, and dealing with triggers are all part of living life in the real world. Keeping an attitude of gratitude can help you focus on the big picture and remain committed to your recovery and your goals.

Starting Your Gratitude List

The first thing you should do to begin your gratitude list is go and buy yourself a small notebook, as creative as you like. You also need a set of pens. Treat yourself!

Now, it’s time to carry the book with you to get used to looking for the good part of your days. Were there some good cookies at your 12-step meeting? Did you have a good day at work or do well on a test? Or maybe you simply are grateful as heck to be clean and sober one more day. Try writing down at least five things you’re grateful for every day. At the end of each week and month, marvel at all the good you have experienced in life!