Studies show that being grateful can greatly improve your health and well being. But showing gratitude is not always easy. Here are 2 simple things you can start doing today to harness the power of gratitude.
There are days when I am just overflowing with gratitude. When my heart is so full with gratefulness that I just find myself thanking God for everything I have been blessed with.
Days when the kids make it to the bus stop on time, without me losing my patience and we have enough time for a really great squeeze and kisses on both cheeks.
Days when I am super productive and crossing tasks off my to-do lists at work and I’m on top of my game.
Days when I am so rocking this wife, daughter, mama thing and I actually planned ahead and prep a yummy dinner in the crock-pot for later.
Oh, how I love those days.
I smile easily and raise a grateful heart in thanks to my Father, from whom all good things flow. To steal a line from one of my favorite Christian singer, Mandisa, in her Good Morning song, I feel so happy in those moments, “that if I spread my wings, I might even fly.”
And then there are days when I have to stop, breath and remind myself of all the good in my life.
Days when my patience is short, my kids ears aren’t working too well and the house is a complete disaster. You know the days I’m talking about right?
There is a reason that the title for this post has the word practicing gratitude because being grateful does not come naturally all the time to all of us. We have to work at it, remind ourselves at it. Practice it!
The Queen of talk, Oprah Winfrey said: “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”
So, so true. Being grateful is such a game-changer. It can completely turn your day around, and radically shift your mindset.
When gratitude fills your heart it casts light on any darkness that might resides there, it lightens any weight that are holding you down and it brings peace to soothe your troubled mind.
We all go through challenging times but when I am in those moments, I find that reciting out loud all the things that I am grateful for can really take me out of whatever funk I am in.
Just saying “Thank you Father for…..” and listing each and every thing that comes to mind, changes the focus from whatever negative event might be in my life and shines the spotlight instead on what matters most.
A GRATEFUL MINDSET
Developing a grateful mindset takes practice. But once you have it, you will find it easier to maintain. What does a joyful mindset look like in real life?
Well, for me it is waking up each day a joyful expectation that something wonderful will happen.
It’s seeing all the good things in your life even when the not-so-great is vying for more attention,
And it’s intentionally stopping throughout your day to give thanks for simple blessings.
That is daily gratitude. It’s knowing that you cannot do much on your own and acknowledging God your Father.
I believe that gratitude and discontent are sometimes two sides of the same coin. We cannot always control what happen to us, but we can control how we react to our circumstances and which side of the coin we choose to focus on.
But I also know that I am blessed more than I deserve. I have a Father who loves me more than I know, and I am a royal member of His Kingdom. And so are you!
One of my favorite Psalms from the Bible is Psalm 23. “The Lord is my shepherd, there is nothing I shall ever want…..He refreshes my soul…..Only goodness and kindness shall follow me all the days of my life.”
No matter what you are going through; whether things in your world are great or things are upside down and chaotic, there is always, always something to be thankful for.
A GRATEFUL HABIT
My challenge for you this week is to grab a notebook and every night before going to bed write down one (or more) thing that you are thankful for.
Even if you’ve had the crummiest day, I guarantee you can find one thing to give thanks for.
Maybe its your health, your husband, your children, a friend at work, your job, your house, your comfy pjs – anything you can think of. Your very breath is a blessing and worthy of gratitude.
I love waking up and spending a few minutes while laying in bed and thinking about all the things I am grateful for. It not only brings a smile to my face, it fills me with such joy and optimism for the day ahead that it sets the tone for how I react to life’s challenges.
If there is anything I would like you to take away from this, is that you are capable of so much more than you know. You are a child of God, my friend.
Try doing these 2 things starting today.
- Before going to bed, grab a notebook and write down at least one thing that you are grateful for. Take a minute to really think about what that one thing is and feel your heart swell with love and joy as you think about it.
- Tomorrow morning when you wake up, grab that notebook again before getting out of bed and write down another thing that you are grateful for as you start your day.
Just doing these 2 simple, yet powerful exercises can transform your day, awaken your spirit and bring a peace to your soul.
I absolutely believe that if done regularly, this can transform your life. You will start to notice things in your life that you may have taken for granted.
I am so excited for you and all the wonders you will discover as you grow in faith and notice and appreciate all the blessings in your life. You will find that as a child of God you are indeed, wealthy, highly favored and greatly blessed.
May His peace, love and overwhelming joy fill your heart always.
PS – If you’ve enjoyed this post or found it helpful, would you mind sharing it with your family and friends. Thanks so much!