Bring Gratitude Into Your Life– 5 Basic Strategies

gratitude

Practice Gratitude Right Now

Its November again and Thanksgiving is right around the corner. This month many people imbibe the spirit of the holiday season by focusing their energy on being grateful.  However this is a beneficial habit we should all learn to integrate into our daily lives instead of just once a year. But what does that really look like and how do you start? Here are some simple ways to bring gratitude your way for the Thanksgiving season and any other day that you choose.

Create a Gratitude Jar

Pick any size jar you want and decorate it in whatever way makes you feel happy. Then fill it with all the good things you can think of. You can use this gratitude jar strictly for the holiday season or keep it out all year long. It should be filled with pieces of paper on which you write what you are grateful for.  If something good happens to you, someone blesses you with a random act of kindness or you are feeling happy at the moment for one of the simple things in life…be grateful!  If you ever find yourself feeling discouraged, frustrated or even a little down in the dumps, open your jar and take a look at all the good things in your life. Sometimes an adjustment in perspective is all you need to turn the whole thing around.

Let it Go

Many times in life, being grateful can seem like a challenge. Especially if you’re in a tight spot, dealing with heavy issues or life in general just hasn’t been too kind to you lately. Holding onto anger, resentment and frustrations holds you back and prevents you from being grateful.  And quite frankly after a while it gets really heavy. Sometimes the hard reality of things is that life isn’t always fair. So it’s up to you to sit in that space or let it go and move on. Choosing to move on and appreciate what these events have taught you does two things. It releases the burden and opens up space for better things to come your way.  If you can be positive in the face of adversity, the universe will hear you and push you forward instead of backwards. Be grateful in all situations. There is always a lesson.

Just be thankful

Every day on my way to work I hit a certain space in my drive where I start thinking about my day.  I usually start by being thankful for at least 3 things. Sometimes it can be as simple as the beautiful day outside or as complicated as a friend who has really been there for me lately and takes the time to listen.  When you are grateful for what you have, even if it’s the small things like breakfast or a roof over your head last night, the Universe hears you. And it listens to what you have to say. So when you are grateful, it notices, and brings you more things to appreciate.

If you want to take this gratitude practice one step further, imagine the sort of day you would like to have and be thankful in advance. This is another trick I do as well. I thank the Universe for my perfect parking spot, for a good day at work with all of my clients, for people paying me more than I ask for, for creativity and precision when doing my job and to be surrounded by good people throughout my day.  If you don’t think it works you should give it a shot. I dare you to create a great day for yourself.

Speak with kindness

Be grateful with your words. Why? Because it can inspire and cultivate more gratefulness over time.  In this crazy busy life we often forget to tell the people in our lives how much they mean to us. Or share what we love and appreciate about them and their presence. It’s a small gesture that can make a big difference to someone’s day. Life can be challenging sometimes. Knowing that you do something special that another person appreciates adds a bit of joy to your day. Spread the love and be grateful. Your friends and family are the people who keep you going.  Don’t be afraid to let them know!

Use your words wisely

Have you ever listened to yourself talk? You probably should. There are a lot of people out there who use their words against themselves and don’t even realize it.  As a result, using negative language can make it harder to be grateful. Sure situations are frustrating or tough to deal with. But how you speak about it determines what sort of energy or mindset you are creating. Most of the time it’s not the situation that is the problem, it’s your attitude about it.  If it’s a choice between hardship and failure or joy and happiness, I know which one I’m going to choose. So next time you try to make a demoralizing statement about your issues, remember the universe is listening.

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