“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”
G. K. Chesterton
Numerous studies have proven that gratitude plays a significant role in a person’s sense of well-being. I encourage my clients (and everyone around me) to practice gratitude daily by greeting each day with five things you are grateful for, saying a daily prayer of gratitude, or just mentally listing your gratitudes for the day.
That daily gratitude results in higher levels of enthusiasm, determination, optimism and energy should not come as a surprise to anyone. However it also results in increased alertness, increased creativity and expansive thinking, less depression and stress, and… people who practice daily gratitudes are more likely to take better care of themselves (eating better and exercising more regularly) and also tend to make more progress toward personal goals.
People who practice gratitude ARE happier! And we all want that. Like any new habit, you need to build your gratitude muscle in order to reprogram your subconscious mind.
How can you begin to practice gratitude?
Look at your surroundings. Start by listing all the things in your environment you are grateful for. Everything from the fact that your internet connection is working (and it must be if you’re reading this), to the people and things you love.
Take a trip to the beach, a local park, even the mall. Notice all the things there that you enjoy. Are you grateful for all the laughing children? The beauty of nature? The sounds of the surf, or the music playing in the car on the way to your destination? All the green lights that you sailed though on your way. Pay attention. Enjoy.
Share your gratitude. Acknowledge the people around you for the things that they do. Thank your parents for all they have done for you. Track down a former teacher and acknowledge them for the difference they made in your life. Write a friend a letter of thank you, just for being your friend. Share the thanks!
So take up a challenge…practice gratitude for the next 30 days and see how it changes your life.
RESOURCES FOR GRATITUDE
Head on over to http://www.unleashgratitude.com:3000/ and subscribe to their no-cost weekly Gratitudenews—a “weekly shot of gratitude in three minutes or less”.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R9z2ELaBVJY The gratitude dance! This will make you smile.
http://www.gratefulness.org/t/abc.htm The ABCs of gratitude
http://www.acomplaintfreeworld.org Creating a habit of being complaint-free.