“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” ~Melody Beattie
Being thankful is essential to our soul. When we recognize and appreciate our blessings, abilities and opportunities, we have respect for their value and purpose in our lives. We feel able to share with others. There is also research to suggest that taking time each day to pause from the hectic lifestyle and pressures we place on ourselves to be at peace with what we have and have accomplished can have positive impacts on both our mental and physical health reducing levels of stress and disease, changing outlook, providing moments of quiet and gaining perspective.
Being grateful can also sometimes be difficult. We are engaged in a world where there is always more! We aspire, dream, grow, create, acquire, build and move forward at incredible pace. Things are getting better and better and worse and worse faster and faster….and we need to be in and on and around that, or…..?
Realize that now, in this moment, we have….enough. It’s okay to have dreams, it’s okay to aspire to grow, to learn, to evolve and to achieve big things but it’s also important to celebrate yourself, to celebrate your accomplishments, to celebrate the present moment and to celebrate your life. With gratitude comes happiness and with happiness comes gratitude. While dreaming and aspiring and moving are all positive, we also need to take some time to notice, appreciate, reflect. Take a few moments in your day to be grateful. There will always be things to hope for, but there are also things to hold precious: health, love, memories, honesty, determination and ability….and they are the very foundations that will enable you to dream, aspire and reach….
Some ways to begin showing gratitude are listed below….see if they help to change your outlook!
◾Have a gratitude “journal”. Write a bit each day about what you are thankful for
◾ Write a blog or Facebook post about gratitude or thankfulness
◾Make it a topic of discussion at the table. Ask others what they are grateful for!
◾Set aside a few moments (like first thing in the morning or right before bed) to list 3 things you appreciate or are glad for today!
◾Make an effort to tell the people in your life what you appreciate about them
◾Place decorative and inspiring quotes or notes around your home reminding you to be thankful.
◾Google or search our literature or poetry about gratitude…here’s a poem below to start you off!
“Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?
Be thankful when you don’t know something
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.
Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.
Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.
Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.
Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.
Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.
It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.
GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.”