After a bit of a blah week filled with injury, illness, setbacks, a funeral and disappointment I thought I would re-post this blog from way back in 2015. It is a good reminder for me to keeping on looking forward and means I save a bit of thought and typing this week 🙂
It seems sometimes, no matter how much we try to focus on being positive and living a life of gratitude, all it takes is one annoying slow driver when you’re in a rush or some minor hiccup in the day for any iota of positivity to disappear. Or maybe that is just me! 🙂
Our brains then seem determined to mull over, ruminate, replay or get frustrated with the ‘bad, blah’ bits of our day, no matter how insignificant. We end up with our needle stuck on the record of negativity (showing my age here) rather than seeing and focusing on all the fantastic things that are actually around us. Research tell us it is a survival thing to keep the bad stuff in mind but maybe it is also that we are so accustomed to all our ‘pleasures’ and ‘freedoms’ that we are begin to take them for granted and expect them constantly.
When we take even a minute to focus on all the good things that are happening to us or around us it helps to lift our moods, our spirits and our health. I know it can be hard when life is turning you upside down yet just a quick minute of thinking about the good in your life and giving a bit of thanks for that can actually improve your mood, improve your health and help you to live longer!
Remember though, just like one shower will never keep you clean for very long, the practice of gratitude needs to be a regular thing. Not necessarily daily but the practice of gratitude needs to be something that we make a point to do. Without it our lives don’t feel quite as good because we tend to focus on the things that aren’t great instead of what is. Honestly … I know from experience on this one that looking for the positive is a game changer!
Even in times when the world feels like it is falling in around you there is always something positive that you can be grateful for. The fact that you are alive, that the sun is shining, that you have unlimited access to the Internet, that you have running water inside, that you have heating, that you live in a culture that allows you personal freedoms could all be reasons to be grateful.
So to get you started with seeing the good give this little exercise a go. It has been modified from Christiane Northrup, M.D’s book.
-First think of something you can ‘brag’ about, something you are proud of. It could be a recent or distant achievement.
– Second identify something you are thankful for or appreciate having. What do you have in your life that others in the world don’t and wish they did?
– Lastly think of a time when you were happy, truly happy, and let that bring a smile to your face as you move into your day.
Sometimes it is an effort to halt the wheels of negativity however it is an effort worth making regularly. Not only will it help increase your lifespan but it will make that life a little more pleasant to be in. Taking time to remember all the things we have in our lives that are great and wonderful will only benefit you and the people around you.
Hope this finds you counting your blessings already.