5 Easy Ways to Practice Gratitude
We’ve all heard the mantra before. If you want to feel happier and more fulfilled in life, you have to practice gratitude. Let’s take a moment here and think about when you said ‘thank you’ last. Chances are it wasn’t too long ago. Actually, you probably say ‘thanks’ more than you think. You probably say ‘thanks’ even when it’s not warranted because it’s become a force of habit! I might be guilty of that! However, I want to point out here that being courteous is very different from being grateful. It takes more than a ‘thanks’ here and there to have gratitude.
It’s okay if you’re scratching your head at this point. Truth is most of us don’t think that gratitude is something we need in our lives. Most of us don’t wake up in the morning thinking, “Oh I think I’ll go out looking for gratitude today.” It’s seems unnatural, doesn’t it? But if you somehow find yourself reading this article, there’s probably a good reason why. If you’re feeling as if something is missing in your career or your personal life—regardless of your success—you’re probably lacking just a bit in the gratitude area. Here’s the funny thing about that—you probably know it already.
True gratitude is manifested deep from within. It’s this incredible feeling that comes after you realize what good things you have in your life. Yes, I know it sounds cliché. Call it counting your blessings or being happy with what you got. It’s a combination of it all. It’s less important to define what it is than to understand what it can do for your life. Gratitude will help you get perspective, especially when you need it the most. When business is down or when life is too difficult to deal with, gratitude will help you see the good in any situation you might be in. Gratitude allows us to realize and appreciate what we have, allocating less focus on things that we don’t. It’s what allows happiness to flow freely into our lives without the blocks we put up ourselves.
If you’re ready to have this in your life or if you’re in dire need of release, here are 5 easy ways that you can practice gratitude on a daily basis. The more you practice these, the more natural they’ll become. One day, you might actually wake up in the morning with the thought that gratitude is exactly what you need.
1. Mark your milestones
You’ve got to celebrate your special dates. Get away on your anniversary. Party it out on your birthday! Whatever you do, mark every momentous occasion with a special tradition. This is particularly important when it comes to your personal achievements in your career. No little feat should come unnoticed. It’s even better when you celebrate your triumphs with those that are close to you, and no—I don’t mean celebrating through social media. I mean getting out there to actually have a good time!
2. Stop the complaints
It’s in our nature to complain. For many of us, it takes an incredible amount of restraint not to talk badly about people or situations. You’ll need to dedicate an entire day out of your week to consciously not complain about anything at all. Increase this to twice a week and then to three days a week until you don’t even think about it anymore. One of the first steps to gratitude is getting rid of all that negative energy that comes with complaining or even gossiping. It’s incredibly exhausting! You’ll see how much lighter you’ll feel once you stop complaining altogether.
3. Return the favor
If someone does something for you, it’s only right that you return the favor. You can even pass the favor along. It’s been known as ‘paying it forward’ in the last few decades. Being generous and kind to other people is kind of a natural byproduct of gratitude. The more you do it, the more grateful you’ll be for everything you have.
4. Write it all down
One of the best ways to see gratitude in practical form is by writing it all out. It really doesn’t matter how you do it. You can make the longest list of gratitude ever written, you can have a journal, or you can turn it into a gratitude calendar. The point here is that you have to write something everyday. No matter how difficult your day might have been, find something to be grateful for at the end of the day., even if you just write out a word or two. Dwell on that positive thought and fall asleep dwelling on it. You’ll wake up completely renewed the following day.
5. Be grateful to the people in your background
It might be the barista you see every morning that makes the best cup you’ve ever had. It could be the postman that brings your mail reliably each afternoon. Maybe it’s the line cook that makes your meal every Wednesday night. There are so many people in the service industry who are involved in your life somehow; they all do something to make your life easier and better. This applies to you as well as a beauty professional. You make someone’s life easier too. By acknowledging and appreciating all the people you come across with that affect your life more than you think, you’ll easily understand that there’s so much you should be grateful for.
What are ways that you practice gratitude? Do you have a unique practice that helps you be more grateful? Share the wealth! We’re all here to help each other out.