The American holiday of Thanksgiving is coming up, and it made me think of what a great and unique holiday it is. EVERYONE could use a day that has the purpose of giving thanks for the abundance around us. It’s a time to gather the family and celebrate what we have to be thankful for. It is also an opportunity to add some gratitude to our everyday routine!
This post aims to provide a resource for inspiration to practice gratitude every day and make our lives more cheerful and enriching in the process. Gratitude is a powerful tool and just like many good habits, such as eating healthy and exercising, it tends to make its way down at the bottom of our priorities. So if you’ve had a gratitude practice for a few days, and fell off the wagon, the following quotes, links to articles, general resources and steps to gain more appreciation in your life will be a great inspiration to start a sustainable gratitude practice.
First, maybe because I’m French, I’ll start with an old french proverb that goes
– Jean Baptiste Massieu
I love this expression! I want my heart to have more memories! Mr. Massieu’s proverb gives life to the meaning behind gratefulness and should reminds us to live life with more gratitude because our own happiness depends on it. No, really!
Gratitude has proven benefits to physical and mental well being. Silvia Mordini explains much of the benefits in the many articles she has written on Gratitude. They are a great collection to read occasionally to keep the gratitude practice fresh! Here they are:
- Accept other’s gratitude graciously
- Look for small things to be grateful for
- Don’t worry about lapses in gratitude
- Be short and sweet with your own gratitude
Darla Brown provides a nice example of the power of gratitude and how simple gratitude can change perspectives and give new life to one’s energy and mood. Here’s her method to developing a “graditude practice”:
- Write a gratitude list and keep it in your wallet/purse for gratefullness on the road.
- Visit loved ones who struggle, this gives perspective.
- Try focusing on those you’re grateful for during meditation.
- Thank those who hurt you (maybe silently!) because they remind you to return to your place of gratitude.
I love an experiment done by Lauren Tober to take pictures every day, for a month, of things she was grateful for, to “capture gratitude”. She shared them with her friends through Facebook, and received a flood of gratitude back. She’s extended her experiment and now has a nice little following on a Facebook group that you can join and contribute to. You can read about her project here. I think it only lasts for a month, but maybe if more people join she’ll extend it further or at least inspire others to keep it going.
I took her cue, and ran around to get some pictures of what I’m grateful for. Here’s a few:
And two more of my favorite quotes just to finish off the post,
– Anthony Robbins
– Meister Eckhart