Research has shown that gratitude makes for happier, more optimistic people. Gratitude is a practice of being thankful and appreciative, and a readiness to reciprocate with kindness. If you’re stuck in a rut and feeling low, gratitude may be the route to go! Pull yourself up and add a dose of positivity to your daily routine!
Journaling doesn’t have to be fancy. You can keep a small memo pad or use sticky notes! Start by jotting down 3 things you’re grateful for at the end of the day. Remind yourself of all the gifts and graces you receive each day, or start small with the breath in your lungs, the food in your belly and clothes on your back. Once you start getting into the habit, start exploring the emotions surrounding each gift and explore those in your journal or in your mind. Explore how you can express your gratitude.
Compare and Contrast
If you find yourself taking things for granted, compare where you are now to a time in your life where you struggled. The comparison will create an explicit contrast that will make your gratitude practice a breeze.
If you’re spiritual or religious, learn a prayer of gratitude and build that into your routine too!
Get In Touch
Spend some time practicing mindfulness and get back into your body. Use your senses to tap back into what it means to be human and ponder the wonderful gift that is life.
Use visual reminders to keep up the practice of gratitude. Use a dry erase marker to write it on your mirror so you see it first thing in the morning. Tie your gratitude to an object as a reminder of all you are grateful for. Grab something that you use every day, like a favorite coffee cup or water bottle and write it with a sharpie.
Watch Your Tongue
People who practice gratitude have a specific linguistic style, using terms like gifts, blessings, abundance. It may not feel natural at first, but integrating these and other words can help reinforce the gratitude mentality.
Fake It ‘Til You Make It
By going through the motions, emotions of gratitude can be elicited. Even if you don’t feel grateful, sitting with the pen and paper can get you thinking about your blessings. It’s called a practice of gratitude for a reason.