How to Believe in Yourself: Three Things Journal

believe in yourself

“Don’t you know you’re amazing?” a new acquaintance asked me over lunch one day. We hardly knew one another and I was shocked when she asked me this.

“No,” I answered truthfully.

She held my gaze and repeated, “You. Are. Amazing.”


At that moment in my life, I needed to hear those words of encouragement. It was stunning to hear them from someone I hardly knew. My honest answer left me even more disappointed in myself.

How did I get to this place?

[bctt tweet=”How did I get to this place? Learning to believe in myself. #encouragement”]

More importantly, could I turn it around?

Try the Three Things Journal Exercise

This “simple” exercise helped me regain my confidence and make a life changing decision:

  1. Write down three things you are grateful for.
  2. Write down three things you like about yourself.
  3. Repeat this exercise daily.

Did you notice the quotes around the word “simple”?  It wasn’t simple in the beginning. For me, writing down three things I was grateful for was easy. The hard part was coming up with three things I liked about myself.  And the worst part?  Doing it daily.  And yet, I did it.

For three months I did the Three Things Journal Exercise every day. Then one day I realized I was starting to believe in myself again.  So if you have forgotten that you are amazing and need to learn to believe in yourself, try this.

5 Tricks for Sticking with the Three Things Journal

1. Find a buddy or two.

This exercise came via a coworker who was working with a career coach at the time. She shared her Three Things Journal with me as a way of staying accountable but I quickly realized I needed the exercise too. Having a buddy helped me stick with it. We emailed our three things journal to each other every day.  We cheered each other on. We gave each other ideas for our journals.  We had fun.

2. Try it with your kids.

If you are a parent, ask your children these questions over a meal. When I asked my own children, their answers inspired me and helped me realize I get the parenting thing right more often then I give myself credit for. I also discovered it was a good way to teach my kids how to have a positive attitude.

3. When you get stuck, repeat a thought.

I liked to challenge myself to come up with original ideas every day, but some days it felt impossible. Feel free to repeat something.  I often repeated the one I knew I needed to work on the most: “I am confident.”

4. Do it at the beginning (or end) of the day.

My buddy wrote her journal every morning before the negativity of the day could creep in. I preferred having an entire day to try and find something to write about.  If you struggle with a particular time of the day, change it up.  Maybe you’ll discover that lunch time is the best time to write?

5. Have fun with it.

In the beginning I took the journal exercise very seriously. But that pretty quickly fell by the wayside as I ran out of serious things I liked about myself. That turned out to be good because I learned to focus on the little things that made me unique.

Excerpts from my journal.

[bctt tweet=”3 Things I like about myself. 1. I’m learning to #losethecape… “]

I hope seeing real excerpts from my journal encourages you to give this a try.  I know you can do this. Because you are amazing too.  And if you need a buddy, use the comments. Leave your journal entry and I’ll respond in kind.

Sticky note showing three things exercise

Month 1

3 Things I am Grateful for…

  • My cousin for introducing me to the wise woman.
  • For not feeling alone.
  • For being married to a man who loves me for who I am.

3 Things I Like about Myself…

  • Because I’m pretty good at a lot of different things.
  • Because I know I am a terrible dancer and I don’t subject others to it
    unless they need to laugh.
  • Because somewhere inside is a “wise woman”.

Month 2

3 Things I am Grateful for…

  • I finished our taxes!
  • I got our day care expenses reimbursed!
  • I’m warm!

3 Things I Like about Myself…

  • I’m smart enough to figure out the EZ Pass website (I’m certain others are not because I *barely* worked it out!)
  • I saved my husband’s comic books for years anticipating a day when they might be useful.  Today was that day.
  • I avoid buying dry clean only clothing because I know I’m too lazy to go to the dry cleaner.

Month 3

3 Things I’m Grateful for…

  • That I woke up on my own this morning since I forgot to turn on my alarm last night!!!!
  • That I get my haircut tonight!
  • That the furnace will get fixed *AGAIN* today and maybe, just maybe, it will be the last time we have to deal with the nonsense.

3 Things I Like about Myself…

  • I have light bulb moments when I need them most
  • I am confident.
  • I know big things are in store for me and my family.