The Gratitude Diaries Book Review and Giveaway I regularly write about the power of gratitude and how gratitude has changed my life. I openly witnessed the power of gratitude during my mother and grandmother’s cancer illnesses and throughout my grief journey. I also feel that gratitude plays a significant role in my health by helping me deal with stress. Always being one to promote the power of gratitude, when I discovered Janice Kaplan had written The Gratitude Diaries – How a year looking on the bright side can transform your life, I placed myself on the preorder list.  As I  began reading the book, I loved my electronic copy it so much that I also purchased a hard copy so that I could underline significant parts that I wanted to remember.

Kaplan, a journalist with multiple credits to her career, decided on New Year’s Eve that she was going to try the concept of practicing gratitude on a daily basis. Utilizing her skills as a journalist, she additionally spent time researching and interviewing psychologists, academics, doctors and philosophers in regards to the whys and how incorporating gratitude can make a difference. This Gratitude Diaries incorporates her journey where each month she focuses upon a different area of her life including marriage and friendship, money and ambition, health and illness.  Along with her journey she shares  significant research and information obtained from some of the most significant researchers along with conversations with real people and celebrities including Matt Damon, Daniel Craig and Jerry Seinfield. For example:
  • Research shows it takes four to five positive statements to counterbalance one negative
  • There has been found to be an inverse connection between stuff and gratitude. Materialism has been consistently related to lower levels of life satisfaction. Research show that people receive more lasting joy from experiences than from objects. 
  • The immune system responds to emotions. Worry, anger and fear cause white blood cells to attack and leave inflammation which often leads to significant health problems.  A constant state of stress creates constant inflammation.
  • Research has consistently shown that keeping a gratitude journal can lower blood pressure, lower levels of depression and improve sleep patterns.
  • 80% of people surveyed said the would work harder for a more grateful boss while 70% reported they would feel better about themselves if a boss expressed gratitude.
  •  A consistent gratitude practice will affect how you look at every event in life. 
This book is an easy,inspiring and empowering read. Kaplan intertwines her personal experiences and research in such a way that it is not academic but provides valuable information. I truly feel that everyone would benefit from adding this to their reading list. After all, gratitude and journal writing can change your life!Sheryl Signature (1) Spreading the importance of Gratitude by joining Emily’s Grateful Heart Monday  and Meet Up Monday! ]]>


  1. Devra Pomeroy | thePomeroyLife on November 2, 2015 at 8:25 am

    Before we moved, my husband and I had “the wall of gratitude.” It was a wall that we had covered in brown paper and wrote all the things (big and small) that we were grateful for. It was a wonderful tool and something that we really need to do again.

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 2, 2015 at 8:41 pm

      I love that idea of a wall of gratitude. I’m going to pass that idea along. I hope you start yours again!

  2. Emily @ Ember Grey. on November 2, 2015 at 8:36 am

    I love that you included the stats/facts up there about the benefits of remaining grateful. You know I’m on board with this! 🙂

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 2, 2015 at 8:40 pm

      This book has so many interesting facts – that’s why I purchased a hard copy so that I could underline parts!

  3. theshesuiteblog on November 2, 2015 at 8:38 am

    This sounds amazing. Thanks for the giveaway!

  4. Nina B on November 2, 2015 at 11:23 am

    I love this! I am going to be passing it on to a company I work with!

  5. Diana on November 2, 2015 at 12:08 pm

    Ooh, thanks for letting me know about this book. I have definitely seen how a daily gratitude practice has helped me out. I’ll be interested in checking out this book.

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 2, 2015 at 8:39 pm

      It’s truly a great book – and is one of those books where I want everyone to read it! I hope you entered the giveaway!!

  6. Michelle on November 2, 2015 at 4:33 pm

    Great giveaway and great timing…gratitude, I’m all over it!

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 2, 2015 at 8:38 pm

      Thanks Michelle. Gratitude is such an important part of life. I think we need to focus upon it more.

  7. Karen Yannacio Morse on November 2, 2015 at 5:05 pm

    Totally right with the 4 positive ideas to counteract that 1 negative. Love the idea of this journal…
    xx, Karen

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 2, 2015 at 8:37 pm

      Thanks Karen! There are so many wonderful pieces of information in this book. I hope you enter the giveaway!

  8. Corinne Rodrigues on November 3, 2015 at 7:35 am

    Great review, Sheryl. I loved the book too. It resonated with me so much because I’ve seen the positive effects of gratitude practices in my life!

  9. Autumn on November 3, 2015 at 1:27 pm

    I am a huge believer in gratitude too! I haven’t seen this book, but it looks like something I should check out. I just ordered a book called “Instant Happiness” and I am definitely excited to look over the writing prompts. I feel like being positive is a constant battle for me, but one worth fighting. I love the insights and research you put into this post!

    I am hosting a link up on my blog where people post anything that was happy for them in the month. You should totally sign up because this definitely applies! ♥

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 3, 2015 at 1:31 pm

      Thanks for letting me know about your link up Autumn! I will certainly join it. This is a fantastic book as gratitude is always discussed but it’s helpful to see how it really does change a person and how they look at life.

      • Autumn on November 3, 2015 at 1:32 pm

        Have you read “The Happiness Project”? I think you might love that one too. She has a lot of research, but a lot of reflection too as she experiments on actively working on being happier.

  10. Leelee on November 3, 2015 at 5:37 pm

    I think the links between physical ailments and contentment / stress is fascinating.

  11. Chelle @ Blogs Like a Girl on November 5, 2015 at 11:31 am

    I wasn’t going to enter but you convinced me!

  12. G Angela on November 19, 2015 at 2:31 am

    Thanks for sharing, I love to be grateful and I see the benefits of practising gratitude and also being healthy, I would definitely want to pick up this book…

    • Sheryl @ How to Make a Life on November 20, 2015 at 7:30 am

      This is one of my favorite books to have in a personal library. It’s an easy read and so validating regarding gratitude.

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