We all know that positivity trumps negativity in life. If we want to be happy, we need to be positive. But a lot of health and wellness professionals are finding that being positive isn't enough.
To truly be happy, or even get to the point of experiencing JOY, we must be grateful. We must show gratitude for the small things that bring us small joys in life to experience an overall feeling of this emotion.
I know, I know. You've tried it and it didn't work, right? Well, what did you do? If you're anything like me, you thought you were recognizing your gratitude by acknowledging it for a few fleeting moments a day...that didn't really stick. I found I wasn't getting much out of it. But actively being grateful is like being an active meditater, or exerciser, or chef. You have to live out your awareness by making time to practice it. You must practice gratitude to experience joy. Sounds funny, huh? But it's true.
Once I realized that merely thinking about being grateful wasn't working in my journey to JOY, I started to actively practice being grateful by scheduling a specific 15 minutes in my day to announce (albeit, to myself) what I am grateful for. And it worked! I started to worry less and allow myself to be more happy each day.
What are some ways to actively practice gratitude?
- Set aside a specific time of day to focus on what you are grateful for
- Keep at gratitude journal. Not only will it sink in more, but it can also give you joy on days when it's hard to think of what you are thankful for
- Associate gratitude with a daily activity. For example, you could use your time in the shower to practice gratitude. Or when you are driving to work. Or washing your hands
- Get a gratitude partner! Enlist your best friend or life partner to practice gratitude with you. Hold weekly phone calls, coffee dates, or IM sessions to share gratitude together. This will create lots of gratitude momentum!
- Remind yourself to be grateful by posting notes around your house or setting an alarm on your cell phone
Need help finding more joy through gratitude? Let me know, as coaching can provide more skills and tools to help practice gratitude.
How do you practice gratitude? What are you thankful for? Let's all post and make a BIG list!