During the month of May I was part of a gratitude group where each member posted 5 things each day what they were grateful for.
For me this was usually in the evening time as I settled down for sleep!
Gratitude and the practice of being grateful either through writing in a diary, making a list or sharing with others has become popular in recent years. These varied activities help to produce feelings of gratitude which can guide people towards meaning and better health.
Noticing and expressing gratitude helps to focus your attention on the positive things in your life.
Life has many ups and downs, twists and turns, creating conflict and at times we may feel overwhelmed by the challenges.
Trying to pick out the good points of the day was interesting and sometimes quite specific. However often it was a general feeling of gratefulness for the fullness of life and a connection to a meaning for what was occurring.
“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes
to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have
contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in
Ralph Waldo Emerson
It is a feeling similar to appreciation and positive psychology research has found neurological reasons why people benefit from the practice of expressing thanks for our lives, even in times of challenge and change.
I noticed that over time it really focused my mind and my thoughts onto what was good or great in my life.
It kept the focus positive!
Hearing from people around the world, my friend has international contacts, who felt thankful for small pleasures, was truly heartwarming. Often they had definite health challenges, financial or relationship concerns but even in the darkest moments small gestures could identified. Their appreciation and hope was uplifting.
This month I have not been doing the gratefulness diary and my mood has dipped into more negativity than is useful. Is this a coincidence?
At the time I felt little benefit but in hindsight, oh the beauty of hindsight, a boost to positivity and feeling of well being was definitely felt.
I will be practising my gratitude again from tonight!
What about you?