Becoming mindful of the beauty in your day - Anne-Sophie Gaspersz

ingevoerd op 29-08-2016

Becoming mindful of the beauty in your day  - Anne-Sophie Gaspersz

‘Enjoy the little things in life because one day you’ll look back and realize they were the big things.’ – Robert Brault


At nightfall, when we are tired from our day, we often fall into the trap of replaying negative experiences from the day that we wish we handled differently. Regardless of how badly their day went, successful people typically make an effort to avoid this pessimistic spiral of negative self-talk. They consciously redirect their focus to something positive.

Michael Woodward, Ph.D., organizational psychologist and author says: ‘The last thing you need is to be lying in bed thinking about an email you just read from that overzealous boss who spends all their waking hours coming up with random requests driven by little more than a momentary impulse. Remember to take some time to reflect on the positive moments of the day and celebrate the successes, even if they were few and far between.’ 1

Transformational expert Marci Shimoff explains that by ’ “registering the positive” you are triggering ‘the reticular activating system (RAS), a group of cells at the base of your brain stem, responsible for sorting through the massive amounts of incoming information and bringing anything important to your attention. Have you ever bought a car and then suddenly started noticing the same make of car everywhere? It’s the RAS at work. Now you can use it to be happier.When you decide to look for the positive, your RAS makes   that’s what you see.’ 2

Your brain is wired to notice what you focus on. Your brain is also wired to notice what you expect to find. In other words, if you decide to register your happy experiences more deeply during your day, you’ll notice more happy experiences the next day, and eventually every day. 

’By scanning the world for little positive moments and savoring them, like a jewel or a warm light entering us, we can kick off changes in the brain that will make us happier not just today but down the road as well. ’ - Rick Hanson

How can we apply this to our everyday lives? It is easy to fall into the trap of getting caught up in the day to day busyness of life, and forget about the things we’re grateful for that happened that day.

Why don’t you incorporate this one simple habit into your life: At the end of the day, ask yourself:

What have I enjoyed today?

-    Make the conscious decision to look for the positive experiences during your   day and write them down. Make it a game you play with yourself. Even if you had a bad day where you just couldn’t catch a break and nothing seemed to be going right – there is always something (even if it is a tiny, tiny thing) that went well.

-    Set the intention of registering the positive moments of your day. It can be a   positive thought that enters your mind, something you see, feel, taste, hear, or smell that brings you joy, a breakthrough in your understanding about something, an object of beauty, something in nature, a smile from a stranger, a great coffee you enjoyed, how you helped someone with a problem, an unexpected good conversation with someone – the list goes on and on.

-    Some days you may feel like you want to elaborate a bit more on your   experiences that day. Use a journal for that.

-    At the end of the day, ask someone close to you what the highlight of his or her day was and share the highlights of your day. This is a simple, quick, and fun practice that yields amazing benefits to you and those close to you.

If you stick to this simple happiness-affirming little practice over the course of 100 days, you will notice a complete shift in your life. Why? 

- What you focus on expands. By focusing on the positive, good things in life, you experience more positive, good things in life.

- You will teach yourself to become a life-long optimist.

- You will end your day in a place of gratitude, which will help you fall asleep more peacefully and easily.

Most importantly, this simple question that will only take a couple of minutes to answer is a great way to cultivate an attitude of gratitude, known as the number one shortcut to finding peace of mind and happiness inside.

Almost twenty years ago, Oprah Winfrey started a gratitude journal and, everyday, began writing down things she was grateful for. From fresh flowers to the kindness of a stranger, Oprah says acknowledging these things made her more receptive to the goodness in her life.

Need inspiration? Here’s what Oprah was grateful for on October 12, 1996:

1. A run around Florida’s Fisher Island with a slight breeze that kept me cool.

2. Eating cold melon on a bench in the sun.

3. A long and hilarious chat with Gayle about her blind date with Mr. Potato Head.

4. Sorbet in a cone, so sweet that I literally licked my finger.

5. Maya Angelou calling to read me a new poem.

Oprah made practicing daily gratitude a priority. 3

You will be amazed by what it will do for you, too. Not just in the moment you practice it, but in your life. Research has shown that recording experiences for which one is grateful for only two consecutive weeks has lasting positive effects that are sustained for up to six months.

And you know what?

By consistently becoming mindful of the beauty in your day, you will gain tons of self-knowledge. You will start to see a pattern in the things you write down at the end of your day, and all of a sudden it will all come together like a puzzle and you will know what an ideal day, and an ideal life, look like to you. You will know what you want to create, what you want to contribute and whom you want to connect with – in order for you to create the life you truly want and deserve.

And that, in itself, is an extremely valuable life lesson.

‘Document the moments you feel most in love with yourself - what you’re wearing, who you’re around, what you’re doing. Re-create and repeat.’ - Warsan Shire

I challenge you on this beautiful day, to save the treasures of your day and to look forward to the treasures of tomorrow.


Anne-Sophie Gaspersz MSc is creator and author of the 100-Day Journal.

The 100-Day Journal, an elegant, physical journal with a simple, intuitive format that you follow for 100 days. Designed to keep you positive, grateful and on track with your goals, consistently. This is a passion project. Born out of a love for beautiful notebooks and personal growth.

For more information: (

The 100-Day Journal is available in the online store (, on ( and in any other Dutch (online) bookstore.



1 Smith, Jacquelyn. ‘9 Things Successful People Do Right Before Bed’. Business Insider 2014. Web. 3 Dec. 2015.

2 Shimo , Marci, and Carol Kline. Happy For No Reason. Print.

3 Winfrey, Oprah. ‘What Oprah Knows For Sure About Gratitude’. Oprah. com. N.p., 2012. Web. 3 Dec. 2015.

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