For most of my life I’ve lived under a dark cloud of depression and in the grips of anxiety. It’s only been within the last few years where I’ve been able to flip my thinking around. It hasn’t been easy but the hard work paid off and has resulted in an amazing shift, one that exceeded any expectations, and sure, the anxiety is still there, but each and every day I am incredibly grateful for my life. I’m even grateful for the good old depression!
In the wise words of Brian Tracy;
“Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation.”
With a shift in my attitude, my life has changed.
Instead of seeing sadness, frustration and negativity everywhere, now I choose to see the lighter side of life. The opportunities, the beauty, and the love.
Professor Robert Emmons, a professor of psychology at the University of California and one of the foremost authorities on the topic of gratitude in North America, indicates that gratitude is not merely a positive emotion; it also improves your health if cultivated. As a result, he claims that people who cultivate an attitude of gratitude will experience significant improvements in their life, ranging from relationships through to health and the ability to deal with tough times.
One of the things I use is a gratitude journal whereby I list the three things I am grateful for each day. Once upon a time this would have been really challenging for me, but these days its as easy as brushing my teeth – it’s natural.
Here’s my gratitude challenge to you.
Stop what you are doing this minute and answer this question:
What are you grateful for right now?
The intent is for this to be – or become – easy, so don’t think too much about it! Grab yourself a piece of paper and quickly write down the first three things that jump into your mind. It could be something as simple as a good coffee in the morning, through to your friends or an amazing sunset.
How easy is that!
My final challenge to you is to make it your mission to take five minutes out of every day to think about what you are grateful for on that very day.
And if you’re game, why not share you gratitude list with me in the comments below. I look forward to reading you!
“Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” – Melody Beattie
For added inspiration, check out some of my gratitude lists:
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