As a life and business coach, I’ve learned the importance of having a personal Gratitude Practice. Today, I want to share with you some information about starting a Gratitude Practice — where to begin, why you should do it, and the amazing benefits you’ll discover once you do!
Many of you are probably already familiar with the term “gratitude practice.” Maybe you’ve read about the benefits of gratitude or know someone who keeps a Gratitude Practice. Maybe you’ve even thought about starting one of your own! But even if you’ve never heard the term “gratitude practice” — or, “gratitude journaling” — before, don’t worry. I’ll walk you through everything you need to know. After all the benefits I’ve seen in my own life, I’m so excited to be able to share this amazing practice with you!
Here are the basics:
1. To get started, all you have to do is write down a list of things you are thankful for each day. You might want to dedicate a special journal to your gratitude practice — something that will make you look forward to writing your daily list. Some people write down 5 things, or 10, or even more. But even if you can only think of a few, setting aside the time to write those things down is important! It’s the key to helping you create the habit. You might even find that the more you develop the habit of a Gratitude Practice, the longer each of your lists become!
2. Know that there really is no right or wrong way to perform a Gratitude Practice. It doesn’t matter what time of the day you write or where you are when you do. Don’t feel like you need to create a formal, meditative space before beginning — that might come naturally, later! What’s most important is your commitment to writing down the things you’re thankful for, each day.
3. Don’t overthink it. For example, let’s say you’ve made yourself a gratitude journal, but you don’t have it with you when the mood to celebrate your Gratitude Practice strikes. Do it anyway! Just write what you’re grateful for on a piece of paper or type it into a note on your phone. You can always transfer it over to your journal later on. (And speaking of that journal, let’s try to stay away from perfectionism here. Don’t overanalyze your neatness, handwriting, spelling, or grammar. Perfectionism is one of the easiest ways to harm your Practice.)
4. Approach your Gratitude Practice with non-judgement, (aka: don’t have a snobby attitude about it). Once you begin your Gratitude Practice, you might start to notice that tons of other people have jumped on the gratitude bandwagon as well — celebrities and yoga instructors, your friends and co-workers. This isn’t a bad thing! Everyone is doing it because it works.
5. Try to stick with your Gratitude Practice for at least 21 days. Experts say it takes no less than 3 weeks to create a good habit.
Developing my own Gratitude Practice has become one of my biggest tools for changing my mindset — and that changed mindset has changed my life, as well as how I run my business. But my experience is just the beginning.
Here are some of the other benefits of starting a Gratitude Practice:
1. Reduced Stress and Increased Sense of Calm
Did you know that there’s actual scientific evidence for the benefits of gratitude journaling? Studies have shown that the practice can measurably reduce stress and give you a sense of calm!
2. Improved Focus and Clarity
Entering the space of mindfulness created by gratitude journaling will help you stay focused, grounding you in the present moment (or the “here and now”) of your life.
3. You’ll Catch Up On Those Zzzs
Committing to a Gratitude Practice can also help with your sleeping patterns, promoting a more restful night's sleep — one more thing you can add to your list of things to be grateful for!
4. Eliminated “Lack Mindset”
Most of us have experienced “lack mindset” before — it’s basically that nagging fear that you don’t have enough, you could run out of what you do have, or others are actively taking from you. Any type of “lack mindset” can cause anxiety, bringing your vibration down and leading you to make fear-based decisions. Practicing gratitude fights “lack mindset” by directing your focus to the things in your life that you do have, and are thankful for.
5. Boosted Resilience
We all know that sometimes life can become hard or challenging, and we’ve all certainly encountered obstacles in work or our personal life. But if you’re performing a Gratitude Practice, when faced with a challenge you’ll be better able to reflect on what you’re grateful for and what things are going well. This way, you’ll start to bring your vibration up and be less likely to give up when the going gets tough! A Gratitude Practice helps you shift away from feelings of depression or being stuck, motivating you to continue moving forward towards your goals.
The key is, that by feeding your Gratitude Practice, each day writing down some of the things you’re thankful for — your family, your health, that vacation you’re totally looking forward to — you’ll begin to realize what’s really important to you. In my opinion, a healthy Gratitude Practice is the single best way to really change your mindset, raise your vibration, and truly make yourself happier, more productive and successful. Remember with the right intent anyone can practice gratitude!
I hope my experience is helpful to you on your own path to a Gratitude Practice. And if you’re already practicing gratitude, please share how it’s helping you and if you have any other tips!
For more information on starting your own Gratitude Practice, and to watch the live video that accompanies this blog post, be sure to check out my Facebook group Alpha Female Sisterhood. There you’ll find tons of empowerment and support for high-performing women, just like you!
**Things That Might Be Harming Your Gratitude Practice And Ways To Amp It Up
Meet Seo Kelleher, an intuitive coach for life and business, committed to empowering women. "I am passionate about helping women find the courage to transform their lives by embracing their vulnerability and taking the responsibility."