Today marks world gratitude day, where people around the world will be celebrating and giving thanks for the things they appreciate.
Numerous studies have shown that people who incorporate a greater sense of gratitude into their lives were happier, experience better relationships and feel more optimistic about their lives.
We become what we focus on. Some of us (myself included) joke about the benefits of a ‘good moan’. Let’s moan about the weather, or other half, our boss, our job or financial situation. We often seem to seek solidarity and connection with others through our mutual dissatisfaction. The problem is that if we remain in default, negative thinking it can have troubling consequences for our quality of life. The more we focus on negativity, the more it grows, the lower we feel. We stop looking forward to things. Our creativity is stifled if our mind is continually anticipating a negative outcome.
The good news is that the same applies for positive thoughts. Our optimism and positivity for the future can grow the more we focus on them. Some very straightforward practices can help us grow the good in our world. I often task my clients with documenting ‘three gifts’ every single day; no matter how small. When life is difficult, it might be as small as enjoying a cup of tea or sharing a smile with a stranger. This habit encourages our unconscious to keep looking for the best in things, as well as building up a wonderful collection of positive thoughts and memories to look back on when times are tough.
In celebration of world gratitude day, here are a few things I want to celebrate and give thanks for. They range from the mundane to the profound:
- supportive, loving friends and family
- living in a conflict-free country
- my brave, inspiring clients
- hot bubble baths
- delicious dark chocolate truffles
- the gorgeous orangey-reds of autumn
- freedom to choose my work, my husband, my friends and where I live
- the joy of music
- laughing until I gulp and cry
Having written this list I can vouch for a boosted mood! The cold and drizzle of Manchester this morning is just another reason to enjoy a hot cup of coffee.
I invite you all to compile your own gratitude list today or adopt a daily practice of documenting your ‘three gifts’ and be curious about how your mindset shifts as a result.