GRATITUDE — A GAME CHANGER

Our lives have become smaller in the past months than ever. I don’t know about you, but facing different challenges day in and day out tests my patience, my optimism, and my strength. I fluctuate between moments of numbing and denial with moments of ready-to-burst panic and confusion. It doesn’t feel easier as the days go on, but more difficult. Is this you, too?

Amidst troubles, it seems counterintuitive to focus on what we have, and what we are grateful for. Ridiculous, perhaps. I mean, we’re busy trying to think, plan, and solve our way out of problems. We believe that focusing on solutions will get us out of trouble and into a better tomorrow. And, yes, it will, partly.

But slowing down and intentionally focusing on our blessings, our gifts and resources, is also an invaluable way to open up space for calm, clarity, and creativity. Worry and gratitude can’t exist in our minds at the same time. Worry makes us fear tomorrow, gratitude invites us to focus on the present: the only moment in time that we have any control over or guarantee of. Gratitude is the anti-dote to anxiety. It’s a game-changer.

I've decided to wrap up the remaining days of the years with gratitude Journaling. Gratitude is easy when things are well with life and the world. But what about when everything seems chaotic and out of control? It might be more difficult to find that for which we’re grateful, but that’s precisely when gratitude is most powerful. It takes intentionality and mindfulness to identify that which we can be grateful for. I like to start with the sun. The sun rose for me (and you!) today. I’m so thankful. What are you thankful for? Shelter from the hailstorm? a text from a friend? a comfy quilt to curl up in on the couch? an invigorating cup of peppermint tea? a nudge from a pet who just wants a cuddle?

I encourage you to take a moment each day to think of what you are grateful for. Start a gratitude journal and write down at least one thing you are grateful for each day. They don’t have to be big things, they can be as seemingly insignificant as being grateful for the soft rug underneath your feet or the electricity that powers your reading light. Then, return to these journal entries when you feel discouraged or disconnected. You may be surprised how uplifted it makes you feel.

If you are wondering what you have to be grateful for, start with the small things and what you can label as the treasures of your heart. Begin by filling your heart with gratitude for simply being. Don't be surprised, you might find hundreds of things to be grateful for. Let's take the road to gratitude Journaling for the remaining days of the year, are you ready to walk the road with me?

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Arowora Motunrola

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