What is the key to living a life with gratitude?
Gratitude is about being thankful and appreciative of what we have and who we are. It’s easy to be grateful when things are going well when our hearts are open, full of joy and elated. There is nothing more wonderful than the power of gratitude: experiencing an authentic state of gratitude, it is one of the most elevating emotions we as humans can experience.
The power of gratitude can be awakened in the simple moments such as seeing a baby smile, appreciating the gift of a loving friendship, watching a sun rise, breathing in the scent of a flower or eating a sumptuous meal. Just observing someone who is truly experiencing the emotion of gratitude is inspiring. There is a state of innocence and vulnerability required to feel the full essence of gratitude, it is not unusual to see someone brought to tears as they are overcome with feelings of appreciation.
We can be overwhelmed by the emotion of gratitude as our barriers and defences, if only momentarily, are brought down. When we harness the power of gratitude and are genuinely thankful or appreciative of something our being opens up and our spirit is moved by the moment. Something we saw or experienced touches a deeper part of our being stirring qualities of appreciation and joy.
Gratitude is a life enriching emotion evoking feelings of joy and connection to the world around us. We occasionally meet those people that have a certain radiance about them, a light in their eyes. Their smiles are infectious and their very presence makes you feel inspired and hopeful. No matter what is going on in their lives they have the ability to see the positive side of things or at the very least maintain gratefulness for all that they have.
When experiencing the power of gratitude we are completely brought into the moment, every part of us is present. This in itself is a powerful mindset – present, engaged, connected with an attitude to appreciate that which is good and beautiful. This is a foundation for a happy, fulfilling life regardless of what life’s circumstances may be.
Gratitude is a deeply heartfelt emotion. Without realising it, it is what we are striving toward nearly every moment of our lives. We want to be immersed in that wonderful glorious emotion. Art, music and any other creative endeavour is based on the principle of gratitude. Through the appreciation of a colour, scent, landscape, sound, person, ideal or whatever the inspiration may be, the artist creates from a place of gratitude. The spirit of gratitude is inspiring, uplifting and energising.
So it’s all well and good being grateful when our lives are going well, but there are some days, weeks, months or even periods of our lives when it seems a very big ask to be appreciative or thankful for our lot in life. During these times some of us succumb to being “ungrateful miserable sods” that no one wants to hang out with. Even we don’t want to hang out with ourselves. It is likely that we feel heavy, depleted, uninspired and hopeless, the very opposite of what the spirit of gratitude instils. It’s at these times that cultivating the spirit of gratitude is especially important to help break out of the negative cycle which is easy to fall into. Being grateful for what you have as opposed to being ungrateful for what you expect you should have makes all the difference in the way you perceive life. It is after all a matter of perception and each of us has a choice every second of the day as to how we view life.
Some people naturally have a disposition more inclined toward a gratitude attitude while for others it may not be an emotion easily experienced. Most of us are likely to know someone that has the tendency to always see the negative in every situation. Regardless of any of the wonderful things going on around them they seem unable to connect with the joy of life. The mind set they have locked into is that of misery and criticism. Let’s face it we’ve all been guilty of falling into that frame of mind at some point. The good news is that we are capable of changing our mindset and activating the spirit of gratitude is a powerful way of beginning the shift to embracing life in a more joyous and dynamic way.
I liken gratitude to a golden sphere of light, it brightens everything up even in the darker moments of our lives. Gratitude turns on our inner light, making us brighter and more magnetic which means we are likely to attract and experience positive life circumstances. A grateful heart is full of joy and thanks.
No-one has a smooth sailing life, we are all thrown challenges and hurdles. Our ability to be grateful for the small things ignites a positive attitude which influences us not only mentally but emotionally, physically and spiritually. When we feel positive we are more engaged with life. We can see from this how the spirit of gratitude can be life changing.
Without the spirit of gratitude it doesn’t matter what you experience or have in life you will never feel a sense of inner contentment. Perhaps now more than ever in our culture of more, more, more and the tremendous pressure women experience it’s important to foster a spirit of gratitude. Much of that pressure comes from within ourselves as we strive to be more, have more, do more, achieve more, unsatisfied with who are where we are.
So what is the key to living a life with gratitude? There is always something to be grateful for even when we are experiencing a challenging time. A practice I have adopted over the years is to stop and take in the moment, this especially helps when I’m getting caught up in the chaos of the day. Just by taking a deep breath in, gathering myself and being thankful for that peaceful moment makes the world of difference. It’s about being fully present and it is only when we are fully present that we can appreciate the moment. Some small things to be grateful for are having a warm bed to sleep on, being thankful for that great cup of coffee, being grateful to have the ability to have a hot shower, having food in the fridge, being appreciative of good health.
There is so much for us to be grateful for, it’s simply a case that we all too often forget how fortunate we are. Some people find keeping a gratitude journal helpful. Writing down what you are grateful for is a great way of cultivating a gratitude attitude. It is also possible to be grateful for experiences that we deem to be negative by being thankful for the learning the experience has gifted us. Mediation can calm our minds for we have more space to feel and be grateful. The Power of gratitude will make you feel nourished and ignited.
Gratitude is the key to living a life of joy, vitality, enthusiasm and hope. It’s a choice.
Try our Uplift Meditation to give you an energy boost. This meditation journey will help you gather your energies to reenergise, refresh and reset. An invigorating meditation helping you dislodge and release any heavy stagnant energy from your body and mind and make room for the power of gratitude to take effect.
Uplift – Mini Meditation