The gift of gratitude
“When we change the way we look at things, the things we look at change” –Wayne W. Dyer.
Have you noticed that when you only choose to see what is going wrong, what isn’t good enough or what is bad, you start noticing even more things that seem wrong or not good enough?
Have you noticed when you do the above, you go into somewhat of a spiral of negativity and you feel downright depressed, sad and negative? The antidote to this negative spiral is giving yourself the simple gift of gratitude. Read below to see how you can give yourself this gift on a daily basis!
Before getting out of bed in the morning or before falling asleep at night, list 5 things you feel sincerely grateful for. As you list them, use the words “thank you for…” to really feel the gratitude in your heart. Spend a minute or two relaxing in that feeling and visualising everything or everyone you have added to your list. Feel free to do this with your children when you put them to bed at night! Notice what other feelings come up while you bask in this feeling of gratitude. (Hint: You might notice feelings of calmness, happiness, solitude, content and many others!) Tomorrow you will want to do it all over again and you will most likely be able to add a few more things to your gratitude list as you will start noticing more things you feel grateful for.
Is practicing gratitude also good for my mental health?
Researchers in positive psychology have found that gratitude and happiness are strongly correlated. A possible theory explaining this finding is that gratitude moves people to experience more positive emotions. Whether you are grateful for having food in your belly, a safe space to relax or a friend who makes you feel loved, spend more time creating and appreciating these elements in your life as they have a positive effect on your mental health.
Challenge yourself to make a list of 5 things you are grateful for during the next week and notice how you experience an increase in positive emotions. Also notice how the way you look at things will change and how you might view life just a bit more optimistically!
Grateful to have you here as my reader!