We all make a very big deal about being grateful on Thanksgiving, as we should. We have the day off, we are surrounded by loved ones, and we are enjoying a delicious meal together. Sounds pretty good to me! But what happens when the holiday is over?

Practicing gratitude enriches our lives in many ways all year long, like making us more humble, more content, less judgmental, more encouraging, less of a gossip, and it even makes us healthier by boosting our immune system.

When we practice gratitude we are putting our attention on positive things in our life, which makes them feel bigger than our problems. There is nothing too big or too small to feel grateful for. I think there is a misconception that practicing gratitude is only for the big, profound things in life like our health and a roof over our heads. Those are for sure things to be grateful for, and I am every day, but gratitude can extend to every part of your life as well. Goals made at a game, good grades, your favorite foods, a great book, or maybe an upcoming family vacation are wonderful things to express gratitude for.

There are many simple ways to bring gratitude into your every day.

Open your eyes and say thank you
I try to remember to make my first words of the day “thank you.” When I open my eyes I silently give thanks for another opportunity to put my best foot forward and live my very best life.

Keep a simple gratitude journal
I suggest people keep a small pad next to their toothbrush and when you brush your teeth in the morning and evening, write down one thing you are grateful for.
If you don’t like to write, put a sticky note on your mirror that says “gratitude” and whenever you look at it think of something you are grateful for.

Have a family gratitude journal
My favorite part of the Thanksgiving meal is when everyone goes around the table and says what they are thankful for. It is such a special, bonding experience to share as a family. So why not do it more? Place a small journal on your dining table, and at family meals record what everyone is grateful for that day. Include the big things and the little things!

Put a reminder on your phone
As important as gratitude is to me, I need to be reminded to pause during my busy day for a gratitude break. Every day at 3 pm a reminder goes off on my phone that says “gratitude is my attitude.” I stop what I am doing, take a few long, deep breaths and think of something I am grateful for.

Shift your perspective
Even in the midst of trying times I think about what I am learning and how this experience is helping me to grow as a person. Doing this turns many challenges into wins.

Make a stress/gratitude list
When I am feeling overwhelmed I often take a piece of paper and draw a line down the middle creating two columns. One side is for stress and the other gratitude. I begin by making a list of everything I am stressed about. Valid or ridiculous, I include it all. When I am finished I then move to the gratitude side and write two things I am grateful for for each item on the stress side. So if I am stressed about ten things, I will write 20 that I am grateful for.
This does two things. The first is that it acknowledges our stress. We don’t want to pretend it isn’t there or sweep it under the rug. It is important to admit how we are feeling in the moment. But then we have an beautiful visual to see that even though we have stress in our lives, we have so much more to be grateful for.

I believe that the more we practice gratitude, the more the Universe gives us to be grateful for, so get started today!

Let me know in the comments your favorite way to practice gratitude 🙂

2 Comments on Gratitude isn’t just for Thanksgiving! Here are 6 simple ways to practice gratitude every day.

  1. Andrei
    March 2, 2016 at 7:50 pm (2 years ago)

    What a great request! I like to stop often thohugrout the day to think about the gifts that surround me. Sometimes when I see a mountain of Strawberries or tomatoes at the grocery, I think about how lucky we are to have food that is fresh, organic, and plentiful. I am grateful to the laborers who pick this fruit for us and know they are often NOT recognized for their HARD work. I try to be mindful of this and try not to waste. I am thankful for the shelter I have at night blankets, walls, heaters not everyone is so lucky. I am thankful for my three girls. Having had difficulty conceiving them, I know I am soooo lucky they are here. And it is through them and the yoga that they discovered on TV, that we learned of Jodi. There are people we meet in life who are connected and accessible. We have felt this from Jodi even though we’ve never met and probably never will, yet we are thankful for the sharing of yourself. I am thankful for the Namaste concept. It is such a great way to see the world and people in it. Thanks for asking. I’ll continue to appreciate each moment I’m here including the challenges.

    Reply
    • Ali Katz
      March 3, 2016 at 9:08 am (2 years ago)

      Thanks for your beautiful comment. I am so glad this post resonated with you!! Keep practicing gratitude 🙂

      Reply

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