Gratitude is the foundation of all the work. The secret sauce. The path to living your best life, feeling your best, making it through the hard times. A gratitude practice will change your life.
Gratitude is easy with the big things and powerful with the little things. My mother surviving a major surgery after my father did not. My daughter coming home from the NICU. These are the big things, when we feel the most grateful. But it’s the little everyday things that shape our quality of life. The little things are the building blocks.
How much of your day is focused on all that is going wrong? Complaining or worrying about all the negative things? Do you take for granted things like a warm bed or hot shower when so many don’t have access to these things?
How much of your day is focused on all that is going right? Noticing all of the good? The things that make you smile or laugh throughout the day. We tend to get more of what we focus on.
Gratitude is one of the first practices I learned along my healing journey. It’s also the tool that has had the biggest, most lasting impact and it takes very little time and costs nothing to do. Everyday for six months, I would write three things in the morning and three things before bed I was grateful for. When I started, this was very hard to do. It ended up being the same thing, usually my kids being healthy or having a good job. I didn’t feel it, I just knew I should be grateful for those things. Even though it was hard, I stuck to the practice. Then I started to feel it. I began to pay attention throughout the day to things I was truly grateful for and slowly it became a habit. Things like a smile from a stranger when I was having a bad day. The sweetness of a piece of fruit that was perfectly ripe. It felt GOOD, when I was so used to feeling bad.
Gratitude became my anchor. The place I go when I start to feel fear, sadness or hopelessness. It is the continual prayer in the background of my days. It is the most powerful tool in my toolbelt. Life is never going to be perfect. There will always be storms. Gratitude reminds you that no matter how gray the skies the sun is still there, you just have to remember.
Love & Light,
Start your own gratitude journal. Keep it by the side of your bed. Write one thing when you first wake up that you are grateful for and one thing at the end of your day before you go to sleep. As you stick to the practice, the list will get longer. Be intentional throughout the day to notice the things that are good and silently show gratitude for recognizing them. Overtime, you won’t need to write them down anymore, but always available to come back to when you need it.
Listen: Brand New Me by Alicia Keys