The main point to grasp about this practice is the way it works and how powerful it can be. We know that what we focus on grows. When we focus on positive thoughts, when we think about what we love, what feels good and what we're excited about, it grows. It builds momentum from the point we've decided to focus on. It expands. We feel fulfilled and inspired.
And really, we didn't necessary need to change the circumstances of our lives to get here.
Our culture often emphases the idea that somehow, we are not enough, we don't have enough or are not doing enough. Without critical awareness, we can easily get caught up in the idea that we need to lose weight or be in a relationship to be enough. That we need to have more stuff or accomplish more. This mindset is a vicious cycle that perpetuates itself as we run away from our worthiness and this present moment.
Our happiness demands that we slow down and engage in practices, such as gratitude, that bring us to who we are now, in this present moment and how enough we are right now.
Gratitude is a practice that causes us to stop running and chasing and start feeling the fullness of our lives and celebrating what we do have. From this place, we stop desperately chasing "something more" and we are able to live our lives and pursue our goals from a more grounded, peaceful space.
In order to reap the benefits of practicing gratitude, we need to do it.
Err' single day.
"Doing" gratitude means writing down what we are grateful for (on paper, in a journal or on your phone) and speaking it by telling the people in our lives how much we appreciate them and why. It means looking at your bank account and saying thank you. Thank you for providing me the means to continue living my life and doing what I want. It means noticing how lucky we are to be living in a safe country, to be healthy and alive and able to engage in the opportunities we come across.
The more specific you can be, the better.
Its not about having big things to be grateful for either, it's actually more about noticing the small things that happen so often yet we are so caught up in needing the big things that we miss the small things.
The small things add up to the big things. Notice them.
You will feel more present.
Practicing gratitude has shifted my perspective. So many times. Literally shifted how I feel within hours or even minutes.
We know life is all about perspective.
Why do some people "seem" to have it all but yet are still unhappy? Because it's not about how much we have or do, it's about appreciating everything we have and do. It's the mindset we have about our lives.
Gratitude is a skill, coping tool and mindset. It requires consistent effort and work, but its work that is 100% worth it. Every time.
It has the power to creates waves in our perspective, motivation, and ability to make a positive difference in this world. When we feel that we have and are enough, when we begin expanding our presence through gratitude, we have more to give and a greater desire to give.
So next time you feel good from being around a certain person, thank them. Next time you feel inspired, be grateful for it. Next time you feel happy from drinking a coffee, being in the sun, reading a book, going to an event or simply waking up in the morning, practicing gratitude. Write gratitude. Say gratitude. Doing this fills our inner reservoir so that when we do experience a tough time, we not only have the ability to shift it, but the previous experience to remind us of what is possible.
I'm grateful for YOU. Your support on my journey of developing this blog has been a blessing. Thank you.