I’ve written about gratitude before and I know for sure that I will again. Gratitude is important. It’s the foundation for joy. You have to be happy with your life to make a happy life.
"Be thankful for what you have; you'll end up having more.
If you concentrate on what you don't have, you will never, ever have enough. ~Oprah
One of the things I love about gratitude work is that it is so readily accessible. Many areas of personal development take a lot of work and practice, but gratitude is always right there waiting for you to notice it.
In every moment, you have a choice.
It’s easy to be grateful when things are going your way. It’s important to be grateful in times of stress. When you hear yourself complaining (with either your thoughts or your words), come back to gratitude.
Joy is cumulative.
So even when you’re having a shitty day, and even when the things you have to be grateful for seem tiny in comparison to your problems, gratitude will help. So focus your energy on all those little good things – they add up.
"The struggle ends when gratitude begins." ~Neale Donald Walsh
Here’s a real-life, in-the-moment example. Right now (like with every moment), I have the choice of negativity or positivity. Here are two true lists:
- I have a bit of a headache
- I have tons of work to do that I would rather not do today
- My kids are home for the summer, bored, bickering, and driving me bonkers
- The weather is beastly hot
- My dog is a disgusting gas machine
- Someone stole my gas card
- My refrigerator is making a suspicious noise.
I am grateful for:
- The comfort of a good list :)
- The early morning break in the heat when I’m most productive
- My comfy bed (one of my favorite places)
- The health & well-being of my family
- I love the way my soap smells
- The calming power of a good slow belly breath
- The cicadas singing at night
- The comfy writing chair on my front porch
- The pair of cardinals in the tree in my yard (I’m grateful for the birds, the tree, and the yard)
- Air conditioning
- My ability to pay for whatever is happening with the fridge
- I am surrounded by oh so many books
- My amazing coaching clients and the joy they bring me
- A beautiful glass of wine at the end of the day
- A beautiful glass of clean, clear water
- My little snorting bulldog who loves with all his might
- Red hair (my source of power)
- The sound of the wind through the trees
- The way my kids make me laugh
- Working from home in my PJs
- The blood orange yogurt I’m about to eat
- The wonderful support system of people I have around me
- My anniversary is next week. Holy moly we’ve been married a long time.
- I’m excited about the next couple of months. Can’t wait to see what’s coming
I could go on for quite a while. Despite my opportunity to be grumpy this morning, I choose joy.
"Gratitude opens the door to...the power, the wisdom, the
creativity of the universe. You open the door through gratitude." ~Deepak Chopra
Now your turn to try this exercise. How do you feel right now? Look around you – how many things can you think of for which you are grateful? After you think about all those points of gratitude, did it change how you are feeling?
Have a beautiful day! –