Bestselling productivity author Tim Ferriss uses The 5-Minute Journal every single day.
“I’ve found this [journal] to dramatically improve the quality of my life,” says Ferriss.
It’s that simple. It just works.
But if you’re looking for a scientific reason why The 5-minute journal can dramatically improve your life, it’s because it ticks what psychologists call the “ABC of change.”
- A = Affective: The journal primes you with beautiful quotes and feelings of appreciation.
- B = Behavioral: The journal makes it easy to create the physical habit of writing.
- C = Cognitive: The journal trains your mind to focus only on the positive.
There are tons of journals on the market, each claiming to solve your every need. The reason The 5-minute journal is by far the best is because it’s super quick to use (hence the 5 minutes), elegantly simple to fill in, and based on the cutting-edge science of positive psychology.
(Positive psychology is essentially self-help but distilled through layers and layers of scientific scrutiny. What you get left with is simply the stuff that works.)
At a glance the journal looks like a pretty little diary but make no mistake, there are piles upon piles of research papers that prove its unmatched potency. It’s lethal at making you happier. But not just happier, studies have also shown keeping a gratitude journal can make you more popular, more satisfied in your romantic relationships, physically healthier, and more.
Why does being grateful pay?
A few years ago I completed a 24-part lecture series on the most popular Harvard course of all time. It was on the science of happiness.
Throughout the course, the lecturer kept coming back to the habit of keeping a gratitude journal.
“I’ve kept a gratitude journal for the last fifteen years,” he said. “When you appreciate the good, the good appreciates. It increases in value. How many of us take things for granted here?”
At first I figured this was common sense, but then he described a seminal study conducted by psychologists Robert Emmons and Mike McCullough on the intense benefits of being just a little bit more grateful every day.
This was the setup of the experiment:
Four groups of people were each instructed to keep a particular kind of journal. This is a numerical breakdown of each group’s task.
- Wrote down 5 things that they were grateful for that day.
- Wrote down 5 annoyances they had that day.
- Wrote down 5 things they were superior at compared to others.
- Wrote down 5 random things that happened that day.
The researchers measured how happy each participant was over the study, how optimistic, how physically healthy, how benevolent, and, perhaps most significantly, how likely they were to achieve their goals.
The results were a game changer.
People who spent just 5 minutes every day noting down what they were grateful for became measurably happier and healthier compared to those who didn’t.
Do I have your attention?
I’ve kept a gratitude journal ever since… more or less.
I say ‘more or less’ because keeping any kind of journal has never been an effortless habit.
I’ve experimented with all the popular journaling apps; they were all too complicated and buggy. I’ve also gone old school and used pen and pad; that was clunky and awkward and felt too much like homework.
The only journal that has truly worked for me over the long-term is The 5-minute journal. It has all of the good qualities of a well-designed app, without any of the problems that typically accompany technology (my old favorite gratitude app hasn’t had an update in three years).
When I did start using the 5MJ regularly I noticed huge shifts in my day-to-day experience. I started to become more grateful.
I would go to the gym and think how insanely blessed I was to have the luxury of “working on myself” when the majority of the world doesn’t have access to clean water. I would have a chat with a friend and feel myself being more present and open, thankful that anyone would want to spend time with me. I would eat a meal and consider the multiple steps this food went through to get to my plate and the work that each step required. I would go to bed at night with a deep appreciation of the luxury modern life affords us.
Colors became more vibrant, tastes more intense, relationships more intimate, and work more fulfilling. It did dramatically improve the quality of my life and does so to this day.
The 5-Minute Journal is the ultimate bang for your buck when it comes to getting happier. Filling out this amazing 5-minute journal is the best way to ensure you have an incredible 24-hour day.
It’s that simple. It just works.
To find out whether The 5-Minute Journal is right for your particular personality, click the button below.