The Hidden Gifts of Gratitude
Often when we practice gratitude, we count our blessings, including all the people, places and things we find uplifting and enjoyable in our lives. While it’s wonderful to be grateful for our good fortune and bliss, the true power of this practice begins when we are able to find people and experiences to be grateful for even during our mundane moments and challenging circumstances. If we only express gratitude when we feel content and happy, we’re missing the hidden gifts of gratitude. This powerful practice goes deeper than just being grateful when things go our way. Sometimes we’re shaken into a moment of gratitude when we escape a near accident or recover from a challenging injury or illness, but what if we didn’t have to wait for a near miss to find gratitude in each day?
Begin by being thankful for the simplicity of our breath and the miracle of our functioning bodies. When we walk through each day with this fresh awareness, the many hidden gifts of gratitude begin to emerge. Gratitude is a fast track to happiness and an antidote to stress, worry, fear and overwhelm.
If we allow our minds to focus on our troubles we will be deeply rooted in that negative energy and unwittingly expand our agitation. If you look at a garden and focus only on the weeds, you miss the beauty flowers offer. However, if we train our minds to notice every blessing, life naturally and easily feels more satisfying, joyful, whole, and peaceful. Gratitude is more than an attitude, it’s a habit. Like any habit, it requires dedication, focus and practice at first.
When we dwell in gratitude regularly, we expand the positive circumstances, relationships, and energy in our lives. The more we practice gratitude the more we find to be grateful for - it’s a self-fulfilling prophecy. Over time, this state of gratitude becomes a sustained trait. I invite you to find the hidden gifts by purposefully and intentionally practicing gratitude each day - especially in difficult circumstances.
You’ll begin to see the treasure in your challenges, feel more energetic, confident, uplifted and less stuck or defeated. Commit to writing down three things you’re grateful for every day. As you recall something, pause and allow your entire body to feel the joy of that gift. A benefit of journaling comes on difficult days when you have trouble naming three things; you can easily review previous entries and quickly be encouraged by all the good you’ve already identified in your life. It will likely inspire you to discover at least one new thing for which you are grateful.
After a few weeks you’ll notice a greater sense of contentment in your life. You’ll begin to see what really matters to you, notice things you’ve been taking for granted, and feel a renewed sense of peace, satisfaction, and inspiration in your current life situation, even if you’re struggling through a transition or challenge. Congratulations, you’ve opened up the energy of allowing more grace, gratitude, beauty, and blessings into your life!
Linda Mitchell, Board Certified executive and personal Coach, LMT, Speaker, and Reinvention Expert empowers people who are stuck, overwhelmed or ready for change to gain clarity, release struggle and evolve to their highest potential as they transition to their next meaningful role with ease, joy, confidence and purpose. To learn more about integrative body centered healing and coaching visit www.LivingInspiredCoaching.com