Grateful for Gratitude
Sometimes in life we can get bogged down with things that we aren’t happy about or the things we don’t necessarily want in our lives, focusing on these things could end up leaving us with a negative mindset and feeling pretty crappy. Practicing gratitude is a brilliant way to give ourselves a little pick we up whenever we should need one. Gratitude is the ‘quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.’ With this being said, this blog is all about how to be more grateful and how to include gratitude within your everyday life.
Showing gratitude and being grateful is a win/win situation for all parties involved. If you go to Starbucks and order your morning coffee, you are grateful when the barista passes you your order. Voicing this gratitude by saying ‘thank you’ is the most common showing of gratitude. You may not realise how your ‘thank you’ may make that barista feel, now you may be thinking yeah, but everyone says thank you, this may be true and your ‘thank you’ may go unnoticed BUT I can guarantee that you NOT saying ‘thank you’ would get you noticed for all the wrong reasons.
People like to be thanked and have people be polite to them, it could literally make someone’s day. Just like how that not nice person in the car didn’t say thank you, when you stopped to let out of the junction made you angry and probably made you mutter under your breath ‘you’re welcome’. How nice is it to see someone’s reaction when they open a gift from you, the look on their face, the rush of gratitude they show, it just fills you up with warmth and happiness. We all could do with feeling a bit more warmth in this world every now and again. So, say thank you for the little things, tell people how they’ve cheered you up or made you feel, do random acts of kindness every now and again you never know who may need that pick me up. Moving on now to how practising gratitude can help you as an individual. I have personally started a gratitude jar and I thought I would share it with you. So, a gratitude jar is essentially writing down on a piece of paper one thing that you are grateful for each day and popping this in your jar. What this activity does, is allows you to reflect on your life, the people you have in it, the memories you have created, what you have already achieved and even the lessons you have learnt. This allows you to evaluate everything in your life that you may be grateful for. It does not have to be anything huge, as long as it’s YOURS and personal to you. I put in my jar the other day that I really enjoyed my cup of tea this morning. They can be a small as you like because even though you may think they are small they are powerful because they are yours, these are things in YOUR life that YOU experience on a daily basis so make them as personal as you can for this activity.
How this helps: So what this activity actually does for you is it allows you to look at everything that you’ve got/had in your life that you’re grateful for so it will remind you of things that in your ‘bad place’ you may forgotten about. So, when you’re having a bad day and feeling down, in need of a pick me up you can physically look at this jar and see how full it may be. You could even pull things out and read them and use these as motivation to keep going as yeah, things may be hard right now but on October 29th you went to a family get together and laughed at Uncle Pete’s inappropriate joke, this will show you that ‘happiness can be found in the darkest of places, if one only remembers to turn on the light’ (yes, I did just quote Dumbledore and I am proud of it).
You may have a good day and decide to put two or three things in the gratitude jar that’s fine, fill that jar up as much as you can. Get it so full that you have to find a bigger jar. You may find that you start with a little jam jar and then you have to change it to a coffee jar or a big fancy jar from the range or B&M. Decorate this jar anyway you want so when you look at it you’re filled with happiness and gratitude. Use this jar as motivation, as inspiration as your light in the dark.