Make Gratitude Your New Attitude
We live in a society based on desire and have been conditioned to constantly want and consume. Fortunately, with a simple retraining of your mind, you can start feeling more fulfilled and satisfied in your daily life. The trick? Focus on gratitude.
Count Your Blessings
Yes, this idea might feel straight out of the end of a cheesy holiday special. However, taking a moment from your day to remember why you are thankful can make you feel more complete. In addition, being thankful can help you live a life with a lot more appreciation and mindfulness.
Try starting your day by thinking of three things you are grateful for every morning. These can be little things like the smell of clean laundry or big picture concepts like your health or the love of your family. It helps you refocus your brain and appreciate what you have, instead of starting up the cycle of worries and wants that you might be stuck in.
Keep a Record
First, write down your gratitude in a notebook or set up a Google form to be sent to your email every morning. That way, when you are feeling down one day, you can look through your past gratitude moments and reflect on your life. Your list will remind you of all the wonderful things you have going instead of things that haven’t quite worked out yet.
Sometimes, when you are halfway up the mountain, it’s easy to look up and think only of the work you have to do. Instead, try looking back and seeing what you’ve already accomplished.
Walk It Out
If just simply thinking of things you are grateful for isn’t enough, try taking a gratitude walk. This is a walking meditation where you take a walk around your neighborhood while you try to focus on the things you are grateful for. It allows your body to produce endorphins while your brain relaxes into a calmed state, happy with your thoughts. As you continue to walk, you’ll also start to notice more and more tiny details– little flowers, a pretty house, maybe a friendly dog. And perhaps, you might actually stop and smell the roses instead of just saying the phrase at a dinner party.
Focus on Experiences Rather than Things
As you continue on your gratitude practice, you might notice that fewer and fewer material items make the list. Sure, you might be thankful for that new blender when you first get it but it’s not going to stay on your list. But the time you spend with friends, family and loved ones will keep popping up over and over again.
So instead of lusting after the latest must have technology or a new outfit, why not call up a few friends and book a fun spa day together and catch up? The next day, those memories will almost definitely be on your gratitude list.