5 ways to practice gratitude every day
1. Gratitude Journal
Gratitude journaling focuses on writing about what we are thankful for. Sit comfortably in a quiet place or close to a window facing the hustle bustle of the outside world. Light some candles or turn on your favorite music. Once you have the writer’s hat on, mentally run through everything in your life that you are thankful for. It could be your family, friends, your pet, materialistic items like your cozy home, the new car, the latest gadget in the kitchen, the places you have visited, the cuisines you have tasted, the books that you have enjoyed… you get the idea.
Your gratitude journal doesn’t have to look like an article from Huffington post or like a book from the printing press. You do not have to bother about the grammar, nor run spell checks or worry about the penmanship. All you need to do is write and express your gratitude for every single item that has brought joy.
You can scribble just a few lines or write multiple pages. You can journal every day or once every week. It doesn’t matter how many lines you write or how often you update your journal.
Gratitude journaling can also be modified as “bullet journaling“. Write down your gratitude list as bullet points.
I do not get time to journal every day so I make it a point to write my heartfelt thank you notes once a week. I recollect the things that add meaning to my life in the past week and jot them down.
2. Gratitude Jar
You don’t have to run to Target to buy the cutest cookie jar to implement this 😊 A simple mason jar from your kitchen will work! The idea here is to make note of the items that you are grateful for. Take a small piece of paper and jot down what made you happy on that day. Fold the paper and drop it in the jar. Keep the jar on your dresser or on the kitchen counter. Encourage your partner and kids to join the party and add their gratitude notes.
If you are a busy mom or if you shy away from journaling, I strongly suggest that you try the “Gratitude Jar” method. It is even simpler than “bullet journaling“. Take a moment to think what you are grateful for on that day and write it down.
It could be as simple as- Today am grateful for
- The cutest love note from my kindergartener.
- The anonymous person that paid for our coffee.
- The new running shoes.
- The beautiful weather.
- The “me-time” after ages.
Many people that I know start the gratitude jar at the beginning of the year and keep filling the jar throughout the year. On the new years eve, they open up the jar and go through all the items that they have been thankful for in the past year. It feels more like re-living through happy memories.
You do not have to wait until next new year to begin this ritual. You start anytime and finish the gratitude game stronger than ever!
3. Gratitude Meditation
Gratitude Meditation is a form of mediation where we focus on gratitude for what we are thankful for. There are numerous guided gratitude meditation available on YouTube. As a beginner in meditation, I prefer short (10 min or less) guided mediation videos. This helps me focus and meditate better. Give it a try!
4. Mindful Hugs
Every time you hug your kid/partner or pet, take a moment to embrace the warmth and thank the universe for this wonderful gift – to be able to hug your loved ones! Every day thousands of people are losing their near and dear. When we hug our loved one it means that we have gotten the gift to enjoy their presence today. It is the most precious gift of all! Being grateful for this precious gift is the easiest way to show gratitude in our everyday lives.
5. Mentally make a list of 3 things grateful for
This method of gratitude practice is my personal favorite. This needs NO journaling or meditation.
Before sleeping I mentally re-collect 3 things that I’m grateful for. Practicing this every day has made me sleep better. How much ever physically tired I’m, I still find it hard to fall asleep soon. Going to bed wide awake and letting my mind wander aimlessly and eventually start re-kindling the past regrets and failures had become my so-called “night-time” routine.
But after I started this gratitude practice, I force myself to come up with at least 3 things to be grateful for. Some (rough) days I cannot come up with anything specific (chalk it up to my grumpy mood). And on those days I recollect the powerful words of Sadhguru and give thanks to the almighty for this wonderful life.
Do you practice gratitude every day? Do you use any of the methods listed here? I would love hear more about your daily gratitude practices. Please share it with us in the comments section below!