Cultivating Gratitude

Posted by on Nov 8, 2013 in Featured, Mindfulness | 0 comments

Cultivating Gratitude

“Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”-Eckhart Tolle

I can’t believe it is already November. Why is it that as soon as Halloween is over it’s time for the holiday season to begin? Christmas decorations are out, holiday shopping catalogs are delivered, and sales are everywhere.  I don’t know about you, but just thinking about the holidays gives me stress. Last month I wrote about how to reduce our anxiety during this time of year by slowing down. This month I’d like to focus on cultivating an attitude of gratitude.

I know I have mentioned gratitude before and how important it is for any healthy eating plan, but I thought in honor of Thanksgiving  this month, it couldn’t hurt to focus on how we can add more gratitude into our lives. We live in such a busy, hustle and bustle society these days.  Most of us get so wrapped up in our normal day-to-day activities, that we start to take for granted all that we have and all that we are. It is important to practice gratitude everyday and use it as an opportunity to reflect on all the abundance that we already have in our everyday lives.

According the New York Times: “Cultivating an “attitude of gratitude” has been linked to better health, sounder sleep, higher long-term satisfaction with life, less anxiety and depression, and kinder behavior toward others, including romantic partners.”  Sounds good to me!

Here Are Some Simple Ways of How You Can Add More Gratitude Into Your Life

Gratitude Journal

Start a daily gratitude journal. All you need is a notebook or a journal. Write down 3-5 things in the journal everyday that you are grateful for. I like to do this at the end of the day so that I can reflect on all my positive accomplishments, rather then focusing on what I didn’t do that day or what went “wrong”.

Focus On The Positive

Daily practices of gratitude are a proven method to achieving more happiness. Accessing our mind and consciousness is a powerful tool in cultivating happiness. When we can change our negative thoughts and belief patterns into positive intentions they begin to disappear. Focusing on the positive makes more room for abundance and equals more happiness.

Send Secret Blessings

This can be a fun and really simple way to express gratitude. Send secret blessings to strangers or even people you know.  All you have to do is say a quiet blessing of whatever you choose for someone else, inside your own head. This can be quite powerful for people who may even be angry and lash out towards others. When we send secret gratitude blessings to others we automatically start to feel better.

Random Acts Of Kindness

When we are kind to others without their being something in it for us, then we automatically get rewarded. When we are generous with others the reward comes back to us in the form of love. I like to buy food for homeless people, or perhaps help a blind person cross the street.  It can even be as simple as holding the door open for someone. I challenge you to try a random act of kindness and see what happens.

Volunteer

When you give of your time and energy you are expressing your gratitude and saying thank you! Chose a charity or volunteer organization that you like or want to learn more about and volunteer your time. Many organizations count on the generosity and donations of others. You can have a huge impact on the world for doing something so small. The reward you get will be so powerful that you will want to volunteer again and again and again.

Practicing gratitude can have an extreme impact on our path to living a mindful life, free of negative self-talk and impossibilities. It can help us feel more positive and therefore be more happy.  It can help relieve our stress and improve our self-esteem. It can help improve our life and the relationships that we have. These are all key components in achieving optimum health and wellness. What are you grateful for? Where can you practice more gratitude?

 

Be grateful

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