Gratitude is counting your blessings, being thankful, really paying attention to the simple pleasures in life, and acknowledging everything you receive as being a gift from the universe – a lesson to advance you in your life’s journey.
EXPRESSING GRATITUDE MAKES YOU HAPPY!
Gratitude shifts your focus from the lack in your life to the abundance. Showing appreciation and being thankful makes you a happier person, it makes you stronger during challenging times, it helps to reduce stress, it strengthens your relationships, and it improves your health. Practicing daily gratitude enhances your quality of life and helps you to experience calm even in the midst of chaos.
FIND JOY IN THE SIMPLE THINGS
Instead of waiting for a big promotion, a huge savings account, the perfect mate, and so on, permit yourself to feel gratitude today. Express gratitude for the simple things in life! If you have difficulty in finding something to be thankful for, think about the little things you take for granted. Are you grateful for the home you live in? Your ability to hear, taste, see, and smell? Your family? Your pets? A beautiful red rose in full bloom? A savory meal with friends? The laughter of children. Imagine losing some of these simple things that you take for granted. Then imagine getting them back again and really FEEL the gratitude.
GRATITUDE IN DIFFICULT TIMES
Gratitude shouldn’t be something you express only when you’re getting something you want. Look for the good in all situations – even the unpleasant ones. Expressing gratitude can help you put things in perspective. When things aren’t going your way, remember that everything is happening FOR you – not TO you. Ask yourself, “How can this situation benefit me?” There’s a life lesson in everything we experience. Ask yourself, “What is this situation here to teach me?”
HOW TO PRACTICE GRATITUDE
I LOVE to express daily gratitude using Sarah Ban Breathnach’s Simple Abundance Journal of Gratitude. Simply write down a list of 5 things each day for which you are thankful. You can do this with your morning coffee or right before your sleepy head hits the pillow at night. And you certainly do not have to invest in any kind of special book to get started. Just grab your favorite gel pen and a colorful spiral notebook and let the thoughts and words flow. If you’re like me, the ’5 things’ will turn into paragraphs and you will be filled with an incredible sense of inner peace. Plant your daily seed of gratitude and reap the benefits of feeling a sense of calm even in the midst of chaos.
WHAT GRATITUDE LOOKS LIKE
To help you get started expressing gratitude on a daily basis, here’s an example of what gratitude looks like when it turns from a list of 5 things I am grateful for to a calming expression of awareness and understanding.
MY DAILY SEED OF GRATITUDE
Color me strange, but I’m here to profess my gratitude for Fibromyalgia. Sounds crazy, I know. But it’s one of the sanest feelings of gratitude I’ve ever expressed. It took a while, but after surrendering and accepting the pain and fatigue that came along with the ‘label’, magical things started happening. I became the person I was always meant to be.
The pain was there to get my attention. The fatigue was there to slow me down. I was given the gift of dis-ease to recognize that I was not living my life’s purpose. I was a self-critical, people-pleasing perfectionist who didn’t know how to practice genuine self-care and self-appreciation. Clearly, I was disconnected from the essence of my true Self.
The quiet voice of inner guidance that once whispered ever so gently began shouting through the pain. I listened. I paid attention. I became empowered to change. I chose to get out of my mind and into my life. The end result was profound inner peace, enthusiasm, and authentic happiness.
Through unsettling chaos, I found comfort in present moment awareness and reclaimed my true Self. I now realize without a doubt that everything happens FOR us – not TO us. For this, I am extremely thankful!
SHARE YOUR DAILY SEED OF GRATITUDE
What are you feeling thankful for today? Express your gratitude by sharing with us in the comments. You never know who you might help with your words.