Benefits of Practicing Gratitude

My life got really unbearable. I couldn’t even leave the house without giving myself a pep talk every morning. My drinking was out of control and I was unbelievably depressed, sometimes for weeks at a time. I kept all this to myself. The person I conveyed to the world was not who I was on the inside. I was stuck in this vicious cycle of self-pity, self-defeating thoughts, and self-loathing behavior. I didn’t see the point in going on and wanted to die. And I wanted to be buried upside down so the whole world could kiss my ass.

I needed to shift my focus away from my own head. Being stuck in my own head is a very dangerous place for me to be. I needed a new way of thinking, an attitude adjustment…

I started practicing gratitude every morning. It’s the first thing I do (after making coffee, of course..). I write a list of a minimum of six things I’m grateful for.

Sometimes they’re the little things like coffee, or the sunrise.

Sometimes they’re things I take for granted at times like indoor plumbing, power, and reliable vehicles.

Sometimes they’re the most important things in my life like my wonderful husband who has stuck with me through thick and thin, or other people whom I love very much.

Starting out my day by writing down what I’m grateful for has made my life so much better, and it works almost instantly, almost every time. Because when you’re focused on things you’re grateful for, you can’t have feelings of resentment.

Also, when I’m making my list of intentions for the day, I leave out the “but”. Like, I don’t say, “I love so and so but…”

Including a “but” implies I don’t actually love so and so, which I do. So I just leave it out.

My disposition and my life improved immensely once I started practicing gratitude.

For more information on the subject check out Sonja Lyubomirsky’s “How to Practice Gratitude”.

You can do it. A little appreciation goes a long way. If you improve your life just a little bit each day, you will be amazed at the compounding effect of improvement, and at what comes back to you!

Invest in yourself, and be persistent!

~Thanks for reading – LC

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