How to Practice Daily Gratitude
Having an attitude of gratitude can be the game-changing secret to a deeply fulfilling life.
I heard a story about someone who traveled to India to meet a famous spiritual teacher. It was a big journey, not just a drive-through restaurant. After waiting in line for hours to meet the teacher, all that the teacher whispered in the man’s ear was two words, “thank you.”
When we are able to focus on the good in our lives and practice gratitude instead of focusing on what we don’t like, we keep our energy frequency up and literally attract better things into our lives.
The law of attraction will work in your favor when you’re grateful for what you have.
Let’s be honest. We hear people complaining and often find ourselves complaining back in order to try to connect with people or to fill the silence. We’ve all said, “I can’t wait until work is over,” or, “I wish it wasn’t raining,” and probably, “I wish I had a job where I made more money.”
All of these focus on “lack.” This is called “lack consciousness.”
Your brain probably developed this habit by being around people who just said whatever they felt instead of directing their mind to gratitude.
8 Ways to Practice Daily Gratitude
Here are eight ways to shift your brain patterns to stay grateful instead of critical. While it’s easy to see that being grateful boosts your mood, it’s not always as easy to think of how to express gratitude, so we came up with some ideas for you.
Your mood, your health, and your success will improve with the momentum you create as you put these seemingly small steps into action.
Soon, as the weeks, months, and years pass, it will be natural for you to respond to the world by looking at the positive, and you will generate your own happiness from your attitude!
#1: Before You Get Out of Bed, Think of What You Are Grateful For
Don’t just let yourself slouch into your day – start off with a pep rally!
Mentally thank the universe for all the good things that are about to happen to get into a really excited state of mind before your feet even hit the floor. Making this one adjustment can change the direction of your day. It will set an intention for your day so you’ll see the blessings and keep attracting more.
It may help to remind yourself of how modern conveniences like access to prepared food, access to the internet, which gives us endless information, and heated water to sanitize our dishes are all so easy to access without much strife as people in the past have experienced.
Just having clean water, electricity, and the ability to choose from multiple jobs is more than many people throughout history have had.
These simple things can form the root of your gratitude if you’re not sure where to start.
#2: Take Regular Pauses For Gratitude
It would be great if that morning ritual powered you through the entire day, but truth be told, we may walk into the kitchen just minutes later and forget all about our intention. Whether it’s spilling a cup of coffee or finding your dog got into the trash, even something small might set us off.
In these situations, you can practice the mindset that everything happens for a reason. Maybe you’ll have a nice conversation with the barista when you have to buy a cup of coffee, or maybe you’ll find you accidentally threw out an important letter you wouldn’t have found otherwise.
In order to counteract the things that can throw us off and get us into a negative state of mind, we have to start new habits.
Before each part of your day, stop to say to yourself one thing you’re grateful for. Before you eat each meal, before you walk into work, before you return to work after lunch, and before you walk into your home after work.
This will be an elevating practice that will create new thinking patterns and keep you in a mind-frame that people (and yourself) actually enjoy.
Read this next: 5 Best Apps to Help You Create New Habits
#3: Thank People For Everything
Imagine being the gas station attendant that regularly gets ignored by customers or the professor that never hears thank you after they give up their precious sleep to teach an extra good class.
When we thank people, it touches something deep within them. When we notice what they do, even the little things, it raises the quality of our relationships and our life. Make it a habit to thank people as often as possible, even for little things, and watch your vibes shift!
As we make others feel good, we will begin to feel happier too.
The impressions we imprint on others will help develop a sense of magic that can build a positive reputation for you. It could result in someone asking you to partner in a business with them or getting asked out by the really nice person who fixed your bike.
#4: Start a Gratitude List
Words have power. Many people use an actual gratitude list to help retrain their own thought patterns.
Every morning and every night, write down what you want as if it’s already in your life. For example, if you want a new relationship, write down “thank you for my loving, stable, happy relationship” (use specific words to describe what you want). Sending out this beacon of gratitude morning and night in written form makes a huge difference in what the universe allows to show up in your life.
If you struggle with contentment, also make a list of at least three things you’re grateful for at any time during the day to shift your vibe. Go back over what you write down again at regular points during the day to make sure you remember them.
By the time you’ve done this, your emotional state will naturally have changed!
#5: Write Gratitude Reminders to Yourself
Write little notes about the individual things you’re grateful for and place them where you will see them throughout the day. Surprise yourself!
For example, place post-it notes on your bathroom mirror, on your steering wheel, at the kitchen sink, on your computer, or leave one on your pillowcase. You can also have your phone send you reminders of what you’re grateful for! Perhaps even find some art that you can hang in your home that expresses sentiments of gratitude.
If you want to have some fun with this idea, you can even get temporary tattoos that say “grateful” and help remind yourself of the intention.
#6: Thank Your Body With Breath
Your body keeps you alive, and you don’t even have to think about it – so thank you, body.
It’s pumping blood, breathing, blinking, digesting, and eliminating while you go about pursuing your goals. It’s pretty darn amazing!
One way to improve the energy in your body is by showing your thanks to it for supporting you in your life. You can do this by feeding it with life force energy by simply taking more deep breaths.
Your body’s blood is purified, your mind is cleared, and your muscles are fed with the oxygen you breathe. The more you take in free air and give your body thanks, the better you will feel.
Thank your body by giving it more energy to do what it does best, keeping you alive. While this may sound silly, this simple practice of thanking your body with deeper breathing will help lower stress and allow you to have more positive energy.
#7: Give a Thank You Gift
Making someone a meal or dessert to say thank you for being supportive in your life spreads positive energy. Similarly, writing a poem, giving a rose, or a card can all be nice ways to express your gratitude to someone. We can give a tip at the coffee shop to the person who greets us with a smile, or we can leave our Uber driver a tip because they made sure the ride was nice.
Look for ways to give thank you gifts, and you’ll find your interactions with people are elevated, even if you’re only going to see them once. It’s all about spreading good vibes and showing people that what they do matters.
It will inspire them to continue to be kind, and you will start to create a giving mentality the more you give thanks.
#8: Post About Your Gratitude
Our social media becomes a record of our life, storing our memories and projecting our thoughts to the world as a time capsule. Make it a habit to post what you’re grateful for each day to make yourself more aware of it and to help solidify it in your mind.
Creating a post will help you hone in on your gratitude and stimulate your creativity to see all the things there are to be grateful for. You’ll find yourself being grateful for things you didn’t notice before that add a boost to your day, and you’ll inspire others with your positivity.
You may want to also unfollow people who complain while simultaneously following gratitude accounts so that when you’re scrolling through your feed, you’re bombarded by a reminder that living a grateful life brings more positive experiences into each day.
It will help create the habit of being a naturally grateful person if you curate your feed to feed you gratefulness.
Practice Makes Perfect
One final piece of advice in the area of gratitude and living an awesome life full of wonderful things is this: surround yourself with people who look on the bright side of life.
Find people who are super grateful for what they have in life (including you!) and who encourage you to be more aware of gratitude in your own life.
If the people you surround yourself with are negative all the time, it will tarnish your mood. Spend more time with people who know they have it good because they have food and a warm bed. You’re going to live an entirely different life!
Related article: How Somatic Gratitude Connects the Body to the Mind