How to Start and Maintain a Gratitude Practice

You’ve probably heard that you should practice gratitude…but implementing is another story for many of us!

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Gratitude Practice

Your Gratitude Practice

Your turn! Are you actually practicing gratitude?

You’ve probably heard that you should…but implementing is another story for many of us!

There are lots of options, and I’d like to share a few with you that might work. My first experience with intentionally thinking about gratitude was connected to Oprah! She encouraged listeners to write down three things they were grateful for every day. I know that  works for some people (and it’s a great idea!), but for whatever reason, it didn’t “stick” for me.

Thankfully, the concept did though! Since then I have found something that works for me. In fact, it works so well I’ve stuck to it for over 2 years now!

I found a 365 day journal in a little shop, and every night before bed I write down what I was grateful for that day. I’m currently using a one-line-a-day journal that’s designed to last for 5 years! I’m really excited about being able to look back on previous years as I note the current day’s gratitude.

I practice gratitude because…

It reminds me how much good there is in the world! 

Practicing gratitude helps me to more quickly notice the good around me. When great things happen during the day, I often make a mental note that I want to journal it. That little mental note helps me really SEE the good things, even when they are kind of small and would be so easy to miss.

I have my clients practice gratitude because I want them to see those good things too. (Even in the midst of all the bummer stuff!) We also focus specifically on body gratitude. Often we are so busy criticizing our bodies that we forget all the good stuff about them. Having a gratitude practice helps us gain perspective!

Ideas for Your Gratitude Practice

1. The point is that YOU like your gratitude practice. Just because someone else does something (and loves it), doesn’t mean it will work for you! Try a dedicated journal, a single line journal, an app on your phone, or whatever else strikes your fancy.

It is so empowering to realize that no matter how bad your day was, you CAN find good things about it.

2. Choose one time every day to dedicate to “gratitude time”. Maybe it’s the moment you wake up, on your commute, or right before bed. Pick a time that will allow gratitude to become a regular part of your day, and make it an ongoing habit.

3. Try morning journaling, and see if that will help your gratitude practice. Especially if you already journal, it’s really easy to add a gratitude practice in with just a few extra minutes. This doesn’t tend to work for me, but some people love it! (And remember…it only works if it feels good to you!)

4. Set an intention to search for things to be grateful for throughout the day. When you choose to be on the lookout for amazing things that are happening…you tend to find them! Whether they actually happen more often or not, when you start making an effort to find the good things, you usually do. If we tend to see what we are looking for, why not choose to look for the best?

Whether you try one and love it, take turns giving them a go until one feels good, or you give them all a try, it doesn’t matter. Just commit to taking some sort of action! Once you’ve chosen what you’ll do (trial and error is great!), commit to practicing gratitude every single day for 30 days!

Final Gratitude Moment

Hold your hand on your heart, take a deep breath, and think of one thing you are grateful for right now, in this moment.

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