The Art Of Gratitude
Honestly, how to practice the art of gratitude stumped me for a long time. Especially when I was younger. In addition, I never thought I had enough and always wanted more and consumed more. But the fact is I never needed more than everything I already had.
Slowly, and over time, I began to appreciate every single thing in my life, and have become a much less stressed person because of it. Twenty years ago my beautiful, giving mother Helen gave me a book for my birthday. This book drastically changed my thinking and in turn, my life. The book is called Simple Abundance: A Daybook of Comfort and Joy by Sarah Ban Breathnach and looks like this:
Therefore, I highly recommend giving this book to someone else as it is very transformational. Sarah wrote the book in a way that is easy to navigate. The chapters focus on things you can be grateful for each month of the year and has hundreds of inspirational quotes.
Every morning I take our doggies Joe and Dolly outside. I look and listen closely to the sounds of nature. Consequently I am in awe that every single day the sun rises in a slightly different place. The clouds are never the same. The sky is always a vast array of beautiful colors. Also, you never know if you will see some gorgeous wildlife, like deer, bears, coyotes, or racoons. And all the glorious birds singing to their heart’s content.
So now, every day when I wake up and am outdoors, I recite 5 things for which I am grateful. Some of the things I am thankful for are as follows; Clean drinking water. Our funny dogs who always make us laugh. Food in our fridge. Just being able to walk outside. And so fortunate to be able to see and hear the sounds and sights of nature. You can find a list of 31 things to be grateful for here.
Finally, showing gratitude daily gives us the opportunity to open up and embrace ourselves and others with a new perspective. Peter Economy wrote a great article about the proven benefits of gratitude and you can read his post here. If you want to learn more, Lisa Valentine has a beautiful gratitude blog called “Habitual Gratitude” you can find here.