“The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.”
When you think of gratitude, what is the first thing that comes to mind?
For me personally, I immediately start thinking of everything I am grateful for. Isn’t it so humbling sometimes to just sit and think about it? Think about the people you love and are so fortunate to have? Or how thankful you are to have a roof over your head and food in your belly? Like at Thanksgiving time, when you go around the table and say what you’re most thankful for… what if this was something you did every single day?
Today’s post is going to be centered around the the power of daily gratitude, and how it has positively impacted my life.
Something that a lot of us struggle with is realizing that wellness starts within ourselves. We can implement so much change to our surroundings, but these changes are not going to STICK unless you take care of what matters MOST .. YOU.
I recently read the novel “Living Life as a Thank You” and it really opened my eyes. This book is about living as if each day is a thank you, and how it can change your life. It’s about how you can work to transform fear into courage, anger into forgiveness, and pain into healing. This novel is centered around the fact that by saying thank you every single day it will inspire feelings of love and hope.
The practice of gratitude is changing that negative thought, into a positive. It’s a matter of changing your perspective for the better.
Where to start
The easiest way to start practicing gratitude is to just DO IT. Grab a journal, or a piece of paper. Find a quiet space with as little distractions as possible. And start writing. I start a timer for 5 minutes just to give myself a time basis. This doesn’t mean you only do it for 5 minutes, if you find your writing and writing and can’t stop… DON’T! Keep going! But this is just a great place to start.
I typically like to take a minute to just center myself. I find this really opens my mind, and allows me to focus on this practice. Then I start writing. I think of all the things I am grateful for. From the socks on my feet, to the food in my belly. My cry session earlier today, my animals, gas in my car. ETC. ETC. ETC.
Remember to cut yourself some slack during this y’all. If you mind wanders, that’s totally okay. Acknowledge it, and then bring yourself back and continue.
“When you are grateful, fear disappears and abundance appears.” – Anthony Robbins
Practicing gratitude in everyday life
Example: “This is going to be a bad day. I can already tell. I woke up this morning and realized I didn’t have any coffee creamer. And then I stubbed my toe on the corner of the tub and it hurt like a mother fricker. UGH! This is the worst possible way to start a Monday. Ok great. I have 10 minutes to get to work and now I have to wait for the windshield to defog. I just want to go back to bed.”
Can anyone relate? This sounds like something I would say. Word for word. So what’s wrong with what was said, and how do we change this into as form of gratitude?
First, take a minute. The events that happened may not have been what I wanted, actually they may have been the total opposite. But why must we buy into it? Crap, I don’t have any coffee creamer but that’s totally fine. I can still have my cup of coffee without, and I will just make sure to stop at the store on the way home. Stubbing my toe did hurt, and it made me say a few swear words. But it didn’t happen to me to ruin my Monday. It wasn’t done as an act against me: SHIT HAPPENS! I believe everything happens for a reason. Maybe there was an accident on the bridge this morning, and by me unfortunately being 10 minutes late (at this point) for work, I missed it and the traffic jam that followed.
I am grateful for the things I have, I accept the fact that this morning did not go as planned but instead of allowing it to ruin my day I am going to be grateful. I am grateful that I woke up this morning, happy and health. I am grateful that I have a job to wake up and go to. I am grateful for the cup of coffee that I was able to have this morning, because there may be somebody out there who can’t even afford that cup themselves.
See how changing what happened into a form of gratitude, can completely change how the situation is handled? This is how I have begun to practice gratitude in my every day life, not just for that 5 minutes a day. (But that 5 minutes is a GREAT place to start!)
When practicing gratitude in your life, you have to change your mindset. “Whatever is given, even a challenging moment – is a gift.” From the book Living Life as a Thank You. This is the easiest way to explain how you have to change your though process. Whether it be a tough decision you have to make, getting fired from your job, being yelled at by a customer… you have to realize that although these are not ideal moments, they are happening for a reason. What you take away from these situations is what matters. Changing the outcome and your thought process to a form of gratitude, allows you to just keep moving. It allows you to see that it may seem like the end of the world, but I promise you it’s not. “I accept how I feel right now. But instead of feeling betrayed, or targeted, or feeling like life isn’t fair. I am going to be grateful, because although this isn’t what I wanted, and this may not be the outcome I anticipated, it IS what has happened. And I am grateful for the lessons I am learning, even if it’s hard. Even if it’s challenging.”
Practicing daily gratitude allows you to move on from situations that are causing you grief. It’s how you can take a positive from a very negative situation. Instead of holding a grudge, and allowing something to have that power, it’s having the ability to let it go.
Another way to practice Daily Gratitude is to improve happiness in other areas of your life. By surrounding yourself with people who make you feel good, who offer you love back… it makes it easy to feel grateful.
I am not in any way a specialist on this topic. But I am somebody who has seen the positive impact it has had on my well being, so it’s something that I had to share with you all. Be the best version of yourself that you can possibly be. You have to start somewhere. 5 Minutes of gratitude is the perfect place to start. ♥
(Just a reminder as well if you’re new to my site: make sure you head over to the sidebar located directly next to this article. There you’ll find the area where you can sign up with your email. This way you’re notified each time I post. You’ll never receive any spam or anything like that, just a simple notification to let you know I have a new post and that you should check it out. ☺)