This is the one week of the year where gratitude is in the spotlight. That said, as I share below, a daily practice of gratitude does not take much time at all, but can generate immediate massive shifts in your emotional and mental state of well-being.
Parenting has taken worry to a whole new level.
So I appreciate when I can do something that doesn't take much time at all, that also helps keep things real for me.
Taking a moment to feel grateful for something or someone, immediately shifts out mental spotlight and our emotional health.
Expressing gratitude also generates feelings of compassion toward ourselves and others.
So as I love to do, I'm experimenting with how expressing gratitude daily can help bring on these positive shifts in my state of well-being.
Often it's the small frequent shifts that create massive change in our lives.
Here are a few ways you can practice gratitude with me this week.
(And if you are up for the challenge, choose one of these and practice every day until the end of the year. See what happens. I have a feeling you will be pleasantly surprised how much your disposition toward the world moment to moment changes for the positive).
Nightly gratitude sharing. Each night before you go to bed, share one thing you are grateful for either with your partner or in a journal. (Aran and I did this for a while and got out of the habit, perhaps it's time to start it up).
Pick a time during the day and think about what you’re grateful for. Take a brief moment before lunch or after lunch or really pick any time in the day that works for you (maybe set a reminder) to stop what you're doing, close your eyes, and think of one thing you are grateful for.
Write down what you’re thankful for. Pick a moment each day and write down in your journal, or calendar, or even on a post it note, one thing you are grateful for.
Do a metta (loving kindness) meditation. Sit in a comfortable position, and quietly repeat to yourself "May I be Happy, Health and at Ease." And then think of a loved one or even someone who have had a difficult relationship or interaction with and repeat quietly "May You be Happy, Healthy and at Ease.”
Take a Thanksgiving Day gratitude moment. And if you don't get a chance to or just not ready for a daily gratitude practice, at least take a moment while you're with friends and family this Thanksgiving, to feel gratitude for your loved ones and the delicious food you're about to eat. Don't forget to savor every bite - that too is a gratitude practice.
Tell someone you’re grateful for them or for what they’ve done. We often forget to let others know how much we appreciate them. See if you can really feel how much you appreciate them; it will be all the more genuine. Makes someone’s day. Your day will be made too.
Listen to a gratitude meditation on the GentleBirth app. If you’re a mother-to-be or a new mom, there are a few wonderful meditations on gratitude and loving-kindess on the GentleBirth app that you can do on the daily.
What are other ways we can make gratitude a practice on the daily? Share in the comments below!
Don’t forget to be grateful for all that you have accomplished and endured this year, and all the people who you have inspired and touched, simply by being the beautiful person that you are.