There are many benefits to practising gratitude. When you practice gratitude you feel happier, more content, more thankful and more appreciative of everything you have.
If you want to feel more grateful every day, then it’s important to develop a mindset of proactive gratitude, rather than reactive gratitude. Proactive gratitude, or creative gratitude, starts with practising gratitude daily by looking for things to be grateful for, rather than being grateful when things happen to you.
Expressing daily gratitude to yourself and to others amplifies your appreciation for all the good things you have in your life.
In this article I’m going to share the what a gratitude practice is, why being grateful is important and finally share 7 steps you can take to start practicing gratitude,
If you incorporate gratitude into your daily life you’ll feel better about yourself, feel higher levels of appreciation for the most important people in your life, and look for positives instead of negatives.
When you start a gratitude practice, and make it a daily part of your life, you will feel more grateful, more thankful and more appreciative of everything you have in your life.
Gratitude changes your mindset. Starting a gratitude practice can create real change in your life. Focusing on gratitude helps you feel more positive about your life and ensures you see and capture the limitless opportunities available to you.
The 7 steps I’m about to share can help you start feeling more grateful, and appreciative of the good things in your life. They will help you seek out and notice the good things in your life; pay more attention to the people you’re thankful for and the things you appreciate; and show you how to express gratitude to yourself and others daily.
In this article I’ll lay out 7 tips you can take action on right now to bring more gratitude into your daily life.
Why is a gratitude practice important?
You can life a happier and more abundant life when you’re grateful as you are more focused on the things that are good in your life, rather than negative things.
Gratitude can improve your feelings about yourself, improve your relationships and help you improve your physical and mental health.
People feel and express gratitude in many different ways. The reason? Gratitude makes you feel good because it emphasises the positive and amplifies your experiences of everything and everyone that is important to you.
When you ask yourself “What are you grateful for?” it gives you the chance to step back and identify everything that’s important. This gratitude practice helps you place a higher value the things and people that are most important to you. This focus naturally makes you feel happier.
7 Simple steps to practice gratitude
Here are 7 simple steps to start your gratitude practice.
1. Shift your attention to what matters in the moment
Developing a gratitude practice enhances your experience in the present moment. By being present to that single moment in time, and appreciating everything about it, you begin to become more grateful for all of these little moments.
Expressing gratitude doesn’t have to be about giving thanks to big things all the time. It is often the smallest of things that create the biggest impact or change in our lives.
But if we don’t take a moment to acknowledge the moment, and be grateful for it, it will just fade away. A gratitude practice is all being present. If you want to build up your own practice of gratitude notice, and pay attention to, all of the good things you experience in the present.
2. Tell yourself what you’re grateful for
It can be difficult sometimes to feel grateful. You may be experiencing challenges in your life that you can’t see any positives about. During these time, gratitude becomes even more important.
If you can find gratitude in your challenges, your gratitude practice becomes even more powerful.
When difficult moments strike, try to find something, however small, to express thanks or appreciation for.
Alternatively, take the focus away from yourself. Spend some time with loved ones, do something you love to do, volunteer, or practice some other form of mindfulness.
3. Experience gratitude for the little things
When you express gratitude for the little things in your life their value grows. The benefit of that gratitude practice is that the bigger things you’re grateful for grow even more in value.
A powerful gratitude practice means you appreciate something daily, however small. This could be sending someone a handwritten note, noticing the beauty in nature each day, saying thank you more often or making a conscious effort to appreciate when things are given to you, or done for you.
If you keep a gratitude journal, mix up the things you write in it each day. Expressing gratitude can become boring if you appreciate the same things each day.
Look for the small things that you’re happy about or grateful for, and take the time to acknowledge them.
4. Develop an abundance mindset
A gratitude mindset and an abundance mindset are heavily connected. Gratitude can change your perspective and mindset for the better and increase more positive thinking.
When you focus on abundance and the opportunities available, you feel more grateful for what you have right now, and what you could have in the future.
When you have a scarcity mindset, you feel that there aren’t enough good things for you now and there will never be enough good things for you in the future.
Gratitude and abundance are focused on the limitless opportunities available, which creates positive feelings. A scarcity mindset, in contrast, can result in feelings of fear, stress, anxiety. The result, is a feeling that there isn’t actually anything to be grateful for.
If you focus on having an abundance mindset you’ll feel more grateful every day.
5. Be thankful every day
Whether you’re writing in your gratitude journal or just saying what you’re grateful for each day, picking three things to express gratitude for is a great place to start.
The practice of gratitude should be something you want to do each day. That you look forward to expressing gratitude each day.
Picking three things to be grateful for is manageable. You won’t feel overwhelmed to have to find more and more things to be grateful for.
If you intentionally choose three things each day to be grateful for, it becomes easier for gratitude to become a habit, and for you to stick with a gratitude practice.
6. Practice gratitude daily to make it a habit
Practicing gratitude each day builds a habit. Building a habit takes consistency and daily practice. If you want to learn how to develop an attitude of gratitude commit to being grateful every day for a specific period of time.
The more you express gratitude daily, the more powerful your gratitude becomes. If you skip days, your gratitude becomes less powerful.
7. Be creative with your gratitude
There is a big difference between reactive gratitude and proactive gratitude. Reactive gratitude is simply saying thank you, or feeling appreciative when something happens to you.
Reactive gratitude is good, but proactive gratitude is more powerful. With proactive gratitude you are making a choice to be grateful to someone or for something proactively.
Nothing has to happen first for you to be grateful. You are causing yourself to be grateful, rather than being grateful as an effect of something else.
This might mean sending handwritten cards just because you want to express your appreciation. Writing down everything you appreciate about someone.
It can be anything, but the point is that you choose to express gratitude first, without expecting anything in return.
This article was originally published on the Lucemi Consulting blog
Visit the Lucemi Consulting website to get even more tips and strategies for bringing more gratitude into your life.
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