What do I have to be grateful for? Thankfully, plenty.
It is a lot of talking and writing about thankfulness and gratitude journals etc these days. So is it just another way of masking negativity and denying the dualism of this world? Or does ‘thought of gratitude’ actually bring something of value?
Being thankful goes way back in spiritual practices. It is a long lost wisdom that is being rediscovered. I believe, this new reinforcement of gratitude is partly due to the new attention and popularity of Yoga and Mindfulness etc.
But there is a reason for these almost cliché-expressions like “Thankful Thursday” – it actually works.
Being grateful has been shown in several studies to affect our brains in a positive way and being of great help in expanding ones life quality, improving the feeling of contentment and being at peace.
Off course it can also be used as a way to mask negativity. But let´s just say that that wont work in the long run. You can´t block things out, you have to deal with them. And as long as you deal with how life is and accept what is in front of you (or with in you) with a loving kindness, the practice of gratitude can really be efficient.
So how do I practice it? Keeping gratitude journals can be great for some. But I like to keep things more simple. I don´t believe there is a “You have to do it this way”. Try different approches and see what works for you.
Every morning when I wake up I take a few deep breaths, center myself in the ‘here and now’, and then I focus on the gratitude for a moment, while still in bed. Wich just might be my first thought of gratitude – our comfortable bed.? Other things that usually comes to mind when paying attention to things I am grateful for is ‘waking up next to Maria’ ‘having our Zen master Napoleon in our lives’ ‘waking up healthy, free of disease (if I am, off course)’ ‘being able to breath and having lungs that function’. And so the list can go on.
My one tip for you when starting practicing or just paying attention to things you are grateful for in life – Anything goes! Nothing is a cliché and being grateful for a beautiful new piece of clothing or for breathing fresh air is just as good as any thought. ??
Last but not least, I am grateful for all of YOU! Reading and sharing and commenting – spreading the love together with Maria, Napoleon & I.
I wish you all a Thankful Thursday ? ~ Märta
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