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How to Grow Gratitude in Your Life

A single approach to practicing gratitude won’t suit everyone and to avoid gratitude fatigue, it pays to use various techniques in your daily practice.

It’s easy to feel grateful when everything’s going well in your life, but we all know that’s not always the case, so instead of focusing on what you lack, shift your attention to what you’ve got. Approach gratitude with humility and a positive attitude, resist the urge to be self-critical, and be kind to yourself in the process. Consider everything in your life, past, present and future. To keep consistent with a daily practice, trying different techniques can help. Here are some ideas you could try: 

Take a walk outside. Whether it’s the sight of a pink sunset, the sound of the birdsong or the scent in the air, what is it about what you see, hear and smell that gives you pleasure? 

Identify the gifts in your life. They could be anything – your own talents or something outside of you. Consider what you’ve been given and the value it’s brought to your life. Now, how can you ‘give back’, or share your gifts with others?  Ask other people what they’re grateful for and share your thoughts with them. You might like to do this every morning or evening around the dining table with your family or even via text with a close friend.  Recognise those who’ve gone out of their way to help you. Then take action with special thanks in the form of a card or note. 

Create a vision board featuring photos or illustrations that represent themes such as love, friendship, courage, trust and happiness. Put it somewhere you can see it and re-evaluate it regularly. 

Try meditation by taking a class, downloading an app or simply by sitting and observing the present moment without judgement.

Journalling is a trusted method for practising gratitude every day. Take five minutes to mindfully reflect on three aspects of your life for which you’re thankful, ideally at the end of the day. Whether you actually write it down or record it in a voice memo on your phone, the more specific you are, the better. Acknowledging what you’re genuinely thankful for – no matter how minor a detail – helps us to identify valuable moments in the present and cultivate a positive outlook for the future.

Written by Melissa Gardi Article first appeared in Good Health Magazine