20 May

Finding Gratitude in Everyday Life: You’ll Thank Yourself

These days we hear a lot about gratitude. There are apps, bullet journal layouts and journals for gratitude.  Perhaps we want to live our best lives so we might give this a try.

The practice of gratitude finds us stopping to think about the simplest of things.  It means accepting the life we have, flaws and all and finding things to be thankful for.  Honestly what could be better than practicing gratitude?  There are no negative side effects, there is no cost and the desired outcome is that you feel better about your life.  According to an article in Happify research by the University of Pennsylvania showed that the effects last longer than one might think. Gratitude is a gift that keeps on giving.

“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity. It turns problems into gifts, failures into success, the unexpected into perfect timing, and mistakes into important events. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow”
– Melody Beattie,
 Author

Tell People How You Feel

Let others know that you are grateful for their love and friendship. You don’t need to have a special occasion just do it.  In an article on Tiny Buddha they share 50 Ways to Show Gratitude for the People in Your Life.  These can be people you are close to, co-workers or even people who provide a service. Just a smile or asking someone at the checkout how their day is can boost their confidence for the day.

Show Gratitude to Yourself

Be kind to yourself and show yourself gratitude for all that you are.  We can show appreciation to ourselves for our own abilities and uniqueness.  For example, you can be grateful that your sense of humor has helped your through life’s challenges or perhaps you are grateful that you have been able to share your culinary talents with others. Think about what makes you, you.

Do it For Your Health

There are actual health benefits to practicing gratitude. Especially relevant is research shared in Harvard Health article Giving Thanks Can Make You Happier, which supports that there is “an association between gratitude and an individual’s well-being.”  Practicing the art of gratitude may increase your resilience and your energy levels according to 6 Surprising Reasons Gratitude Is Great For Your Health.

For  tools and ideas on how to get started, check out our Gratitude board on Pinterest or next week’s Facebook posts.   Here you’ll find gratitude printables, journal prompts, articles and Gratitude Challenges.

 

25 Apr

Take a moment to be grateful

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Even in difficult times we have things to be grateful for.  As a counsellor I find gratitude exercises to be positive and very powerful for clients.

Gratitude can be as simple as being grateful for a sunny day or as complex as gratitude for the opportunity to find your way through an emotional struggle or serious illness.  People often spend time thinking about what they are not grateful for but there is quite a shift when we look at the good things in our lives instead of the negative.

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Robert Emmons,  a leading scientific expert on gratitude looks at the physical, social and psychological benefits of gratitude in Why Gratitude Is Good.  His research finds that gratitude can help us have more restorative sleep, be happier and more connected.

In 10 Ways to Be More Grateful  Emmons provides suggestions on how we can integrate gratitude into our daily living. In an inspiring Ted Talk by Benadictine monk David Steindl-Rast the answer is simple “Want to Be Happy? Be Grateful.”

So to help you get going, we’ve added to the Lidkea Stob,  Gratitude board on Pinterest some great strategies to choose from.  Perhaps a 7 day gratitude challenge or the creation of a happiness jar.

So get started, don’t wait, find your way to a more relaxed and happier you. The moment is now!

 

 

 

 

12 Apr

What would you do for yourself?

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We are never too young or too old to do something good for ourselves.  Sometimes it is difficult to put ourselves first or self nuture. I asked a few friends what they might thank themselves for in the future and the answers were all so different.  One said they would thank themselves for starting their own business and creating freedom for themselves.  Another said they would thank themselves for setting boundaries with family members that they found brought negativity and self doubt into their daily life.  One friend said the best thing they did was take a vacation with no wifi and without looking back.

In an article from Power of Positivity titled 10 Things You Can Do Now That You’ll Thank Yourself For Later, they mention living in the present as one of the ten.  While there is nothing wrong with with planning and setting future goals sometimes we can miss out on what is happening here and now.

Do you ever find yourself sitting at a family event while making a mental to do list in your head?  Or maybe watching your child play hockey while sending a grocery list to yourself on your phone?  By not being truly present we might miss that first hockey goal or family story that makes everyone laugh for years to come.

Be who you really are each day challenges an article by Lifehack, 30 Vital Things your future self will thank you for. It suggests first you can start with deciding who you really are and then take the next step to be that person daily.  Being authentic and true to yourself is a gift you can give to your future self.

So be present, be honest, be you and then do something that your future self will thank you for!