Save a place for Gratefulness
Going around the Thanksgiving table taking turns saying what we are thankful for is a great tradition, but why does it have to stop there? I remember many Thanksgivings, turning my attention inward and thinking of the things that I was thankful for. During my search for health, happiness and living a more meaningful life the same thing keeps coming up in my research. Having an attitude of gratitude on a daily bases can help me achieve many things that I want in my life.
Turning attention inward and being thankful on a daily basis is proven to contribute to boosting the immune system, better sleep, better relationships and can even help reduce stress. Huffington Post
Here are Some Things You Can Do to Become a More Thankful You
Appreciate the Small Things
Stop and savor the delicious coffee by saying “mmmmmmm” out loud. Thank someone with a wave and a smile when they let you in front of them in traffic. Appreciate the parts of your body that feel good instead of focusing on your ills.
Be Thankful for the Big Things
Don’t take nature for granted. We should be very thankful to our prehistoric ancestors for preserving the National Parks in our nation. People who were gone long before us fought for the preservation of these parks for future generations (us). It would have been just as easy to develop all of our land instead of preserving what they did. You do not have to plan a trip to Yellowstone National Park to appreciate the beauty of nature. Take a walk around the block and watch the birds or enjoy the sunrise. Be thankful for Mother Earth and all of the beauty that surrounds us. Find a piece of nature to be thankful for each day.
A Thankful Dialect
“I am the luckiest person” or “I am so thankful for this gorgeous weather” are examples of phrases you could say to express gratitude outwardly to become accustomed to thinking and feeling grateful. When you express yourself by using thankful words consistently, in time your new dialect can spread to others.
Thank it, Don’t Blanket
We were taught to say please and thank-you but there is something about really thanking someone for something you appreciate. Taking time to pull someone aside for a heartfelt thank-you is much more meaningful than the blanket “thanks” that you say when you ask for the salt. Being creative with your thankfulness can be a wonderful experience for both parties. Try sending a thank-you card the next time you were hosted at a party or leave a little note on your husband’s windshield thanking him for running your errands. Remember it’s not about paying someone back; it’s about letting them know how much you appreciate them. A small gesture can go a long way.
Harvard studies conducted by Professor Shawn Achor show that people who think about and write down three things they are grateful for every day for 21 days can re-train their brain and become a more thankful person naturally. Even when things are not going your way, there are still so many things to be thankful for every single day. Seeking them out and acknowledging them can bring you a life you will be thankful for.
What I Do
For me, my Joy Journal has not only helped me learn how to be grateful on a daily basis, it has also helped pull me out of some very dark times. When I know I am going to be recording some joys (aka being thankful) I keep my eyes and my heart open to accept and receive gifts from everywhere. Joy Journaling (or a Gratitude Journal) has made me realize that I have so many simple pleasures around me every day to be thankful for. The big things just follow naturally.
For some wonderful information on gratitude, I really enjoyed this program narrated by Susan Sarandon. Science of Gratitude Radio Special
You have read “Save a Place for Gratefulness” here first on Live Big and Small. Please subscribe to receive notifications each time I post something new. I really appreciate you for reading.