Written by: Olivia Forgette
Life is busy. It’s not a secret, it can be easy to take things for granted. From seemingly simple things like the roof over your head and food on your plate (for many, this isn’t so simple) to big things like your health, friends, and family; the hustle and bustle of life can leave you blind to what amazing things you have right in front of you.
With November fast approaching, we would like to share with you our top five ways to become more grateful in your everyday life.
Acknowledging the aspects that enrich your life and being mindful for the things that you are thankful for is proven to lead to a more fulfilled, and even healthier life. Expressing gratitude can improve sleep, mood, and even immunity. Gratitude can also decrease anxiety and depression. This is powerful stuff! Keep reading for our top five tips to become more grateful.
1) Appreciate it all
Our first tip for becoming more grateful is to not be picky in the things you decide to show appreciation toward. Gratitude doesn’t need to be saved up for only the “big” parts of your life. Being grateful is a habit that you can master by showing your appreciation for every little thing that brings you joy. There is not one aspect of your life that is too small to be unworthy of gratitude.
From the shoes on your feet, the delicious bite you had for lunch, to the smell of the fresh cut lawn, or your furry friend companion. Each-and-every part of your day deserves gratitude.
Be sure to appreciate it all. Even the seemingly small things. Small things can add up to big changes.
2) Turn a challenge into gratitude
When life throws us a curveball, it’s easy to sulk and feel bad for ourselves. To wallow in the challenging time. But gratitude is not only feeling thankful for the good parts of our lives, but also for the challenging parts.
For example, say a loved one has passed away. It can feel easy to think, “Why did this have to happen to me? Why did I deserve to lose this person?” Of course, grieving is a complex process, but changing those negative feelings into, “I’m so grateful I was able to know this person,” or “I feel so lucky to have learned from them before they were gone,” can really change your perspective and make you an overall more grateful person.
Another example, say you were laid off from your job. Instead of being angry and down about the situation, think about how lucky you were to have gotten the experience and knowledge you gained while you worked at that job. Those experiences will help you to find a better job that is waiting for you around the corner. Or, maybe you made a lifelong friend out of coworker.
This shift in mindset can be compelling! Be grateful your challenges and they may start to seem a little less challenging after all.
3) Improve your happiness
Being a grateful person can make you happy, but being happy can also make you feel grateful. Some great ways to improve your overall happiness are:
- Manage your stress levels
- Enjoy yourself in anything you’re doing
- Say things to yourself to boost your self-esteem
- Live a healthy lifestyle (exercise gives endorphins!)
- Get good sleep
- Communicate your feelings effectively
If you are feeling happy overall, it will make being grateful easier!
4) Keep a gratitude journal
Establishing a daily practice of simply writing down things you are grateful for in any given day can be a powerful tool to helping you become a more grateful person. Taking just five minutes a day to recall what you were grateful for in a day will help you associate ordinary events with feelings of gratitude. You can use a plain journal for this practice, or try one that offers prompts to make the practice easier when you first start out.
Even if you’ve had a rough day, forcing yourself to find a few things (even super small things) to be grateful for can change your feelings about that day. Some small things you may be grateful for are:
- You got a green light on your way to work
- Your coworker complimented your hair (be thankful for that friendship)
- The roof over your head that protected you from rain
- A working furnace for a comfortable place to live
- Your morning cup of coffee
5) Utilize visual reminders
Two major roadblocks when people are attempting to become more grateful are forgetfulness and mindful awareness. Providing yourself with visual reminders to be thinking about gratitude can aid a ton in your success in becoming a more grateful person. These visual cues can trigger you to think about gratitude. Some ideas for visual reminders include:
- Sticky notes on your desk at work or the bathroom mirror
- Leaving your gratitude journal on your bedside
- Having photos of those you love around your home or workplace
Whatever visual reminders work best for you; be sure they are easily present in places you already will be looking. Once you see the reminder, take a moment to think about what you are grateful for.
We hope this post inspires you to try giving gratitude a try. Integrating small shifts in mindset into your life can be a strong tool to a happier and healthier you.
If you or someone you know is looking to buy or sell real estate, contact Maureen Forgette with CENTURY 21 Roberts and Andrews for an elevated level of service. You’ll be heading to the closing table in no time!