What are gratitude practices?
Gratitude practices are simply the act of taking the time to notice and reflect upon the things you’re thankful for. Research has proven that practicing gratitude can improve our physical and psychological health. People who regularly practice gratitude often experience more positive emotions, feel more alert and energetic, sleep better, and even have stronger immune systems.
How can practicing gratitude change my life?
By practicing gratitude, you can reprogram your brain to appreciate your life and the world around you more reflexively. Practicing gratitude is more than “positive thinking”; it’s a way of teaching our brains what to look for, even when we’re struggling. Think of your brain like a search engine; whatever you search for produces the results you receive. In other words, if you’re constantly overwhelming your brain with negative thoughts, your brain will seek the negative around you. Conversely, if you create positive energy for yourself, you will attract positive energy in return. Research shows that grateful people are often happier.
How can I start practicing gratitude today?
Practicing gratitude can be as simple as writing a short list of things you are grateful for today. Start by listing simple, practical things you are thankful for, such as your morning cup of coffee or your cat sleeping next to you while you work. When you’re ready to dive deeper, try these specific activities for practicing gratitude:
Create a Gratitude Journal
Create a routine for yourself around writing in a journal daily. Try journaling first thing in the morning so that you can start your day off in a positive direction. Journaling can be as simple as listing one thing you’re grateful for and five reasons why you’re grateful for it.
Practice Smudging and Prayer
The art of smudging can clear not only your brain, but your environment of toxic, negative energy. By removing negative energy, you can clear your own path toward a more positive, grateful lifestyle. Prayer gives us a spiritual outlet for our gratitude and, sometimes, speaking the words out loud can have a powerful impact on our mood, our outlook, and our environment.
Perform a Gratitude Meditation
Meditation simply refers to dedicating time and space to reflecting on all you are grateful for and allowing that to guide your daily habits. Find a safe and quiet space, sit calmly, close your eyes, and relax your breathing. Allow your worries, fears, and anxieties to leave your body and focus only on that which you are thankful for. By dedicating time to this practice, you are teaching your body and your mind to respond positively by practicing consistent, daily gratitude.