Adopting a mindset of gratitude and infusing this energy into your daily life is a simple and amazing way to improve your mental and physical health. Gratitude is essentially giving thanks for all that you have in your life, whether it is small or big. But besides simply expressing thanks, there are many other fun and unique ways to practice gratitude on a daily basis as well.
Here are 5 simple ways to feel more grateful, right now.
Make a Gratitude List
Making a gratitude list is one of the easiest ways to practice gratitude. This technique is as simple as it sounds; all you need is a pen and paper! You can incorporate this beautiful ritual at the end of your day by placing a notepad beside your bed, or first thing in the morning as part of a journaling ritual. Your list can be as long as you want it to be, but try to write down at least three things that you are grateful for. They can be as simple as a cup of coffee, or your bicycle, to things that are incredibly important to you like your a beloved family member or friend in your life.
A special gratitude journal is a wonderful way to keep your daily gratitude list going over time. It can be just a simple daily gratitude list, or it can be an opportunity for you to write more in detail about why you are grateful for these things and to explore your emotions or thoughts.
Gratitude meditations are mindful practices of focusing your mental energy on the feeling of gratitude. There are many different ways to practice a gratitude meditation, but one of the most common ways is by focusing on gratitude for your body and health in the present moment, as each breath moves in and out of your body. By focusing on gratitude for these simple functions that we so often take for granted, you can discover the essence of gratitude in your greater life.
Another method of meditating on gratitude, similar to the gratitude list, is to mentally list off things you are grateful for, in your mind instead of writing them down. As each thing comes to mind, take a moment to breathe and reflect on why it makes you feel good and how much you appreciate it.
Make Gratitude Your Intention for Your Yoga Practice
Yoga is a spiritual and mindful practice, but you can further enhance the mental and physical benefits by adding gratitude into your practice. If you like to set an intention (or Sankalpa) at the start of your practice, try setting it on gratitude the next time you step onto your yoga mat. Taking moment to express gratitude for your body, breath, or any other thing in your life at the start of class, will add a nice touch to your practice.
Express Gratitude to Others
Perhaps the most essential gratitude practice of all is to actually share your gratitude with those around you. It can be easy to take friends, family, and loved ones for granted, but verbally expressing gratitude towards others is a great way to deepen your relationships and create lasting bonds of love and compassion. Pretty much everyone loves to know that they are appreciated. Sometimes we forget to tell people how much they mean to us, so do your best to let tell people you love that you’re grateful for them. It doesn’t have to just be close friends and family either. A waiter who makes your dining experience special, the grocery checkout person, or anyone you cross paths with, deserve appreciation sometimes. Not only will it put you into a more grateful vibration, but it’ll also give a boost to someone who might need it, in the perfect moment.
Gratitude is a simple but highly effective way to improve your mental health and overall wellbeing. Do one of the above practices today to feel more grateful. It doesn’t have to take more than a minute, and consistency is key, so try to make this part of your life to increase the benefits of gratitude even more. What are you grateful for today?
By Emily Ye
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