This week I want to talk aboout 2 things I practice and really believe in. One I have been practicing conciously for quite some time now and the other I am new to fully embracing and applying the concepts to.
Practicing gratitude is something that has helped me through alot of tough times. It’s not always easy to do and I’ve been through times where I really felt I had NOTHING to be grateful for. In reality though, if you’re breathing, then there is at least one thing to be grateful for. When Kayla passed, I still followed this practice and it was hard. I look back on the entries to my gratitude journal then and it was all based on the time I got to spend with Kayla, the fact we had Elena in our lives and the support of my family. It was all BIG stuff to be grateful for. I found this practice something that helped me to shed a bit of light on a really dark time. It showed me that I still had a reason to be around. I still had reasons to get up in the morning and breathe. If you’re having a hard time with thinking of things to be grateful for, you can start off with little things, it doesn’t have to be super deep. Things like, I am super grateful for this cup of coffee, because it gives me a kick start to my day and allows me to feel human. Finding a few things daily to be grateful for is especially important in tough times, like the one we are all currently living in.
There are all different methods of practicing gratitude and different times of the day that people do this. None of which are better than the other. There are journals to prompt you in the morning and evening, there are daily planners that incorporate writing things you’re grateful for when you plan your day, apps, websites, books, videos-you name it, there’s always a lot of differing opinions and methodologies out there. For me personally, I choose to do the following these days:
- I wake up and try to think of 1 thing I am grateful for
- I have my coffee and breakfast
- I meditate for at least 10 minutes
- I either use my calm app to write 3 things I am grateful for or use my gratitude journal(it depends on the month, I am currently going between the two to decide which I prefer)
That’s it! It’s not groundbreaking. I am not doing anything super crazy. The gratitude piece takes me anywhere between 30 seconds and 10 minutes, Some days it’s easy, and others it’s hard.
What I am learning though as I wend my way to an enlightened mind and spirit, is that practicing gratitude is the foundation for the my next practice, which I have only recently gotten serious about which is Affirmations.
I mentioned last week that I was rereading You Can Heal Your Life by Louise Hay. This book is amazing if you are looking to take your spiritual self and healing your mind to the next level. It really is a book that talks about how you speak to yourself and what that creates in your life. Alot of the times, you don’t even realize the things that you say and how it is impacting the path your life takes.
Let’s look at this a bit deeper. Think about how you perceive yourself. You think, I am overweight. I don’t like my freckles, I don’t have time to meditate. I am broke. My car sucks. I hate my job. You wake up in the morning and think well, here goes another shitty day.
How do you think your days will go if you think this way? You create your own reality. A favorite quote from Louise Hay goes like this “A thought is just a thought, and a thought can be changed” Think about that for a second. YOU control your thoughts. Nobody else does, just you. Nobody else even hears your thoughts so you can THINK WHATEVER YOU WANT. What???? Holy game changer guys. Think about that. You can tell yourself anything. That means that,..if you create your own reality by telling yourself your own thoughts that nobody else can hear….then you can create the life that you want by changing how you think.
So how can we change our thoughts? First of all, as with anything, it’s going to take time. It’s creating a habit, and you’ll need to work at it just like you would with changing any habit.
So let’s think of that self perception. I am overweight. How can you change that thought to better serve you? Would you tell a friend hey you’re fat? NO! So why would you talk to yourself that way???? Instead, we can think, I love this body. This body is working so hard to carry me around every day. This beautiful body is what is helping me to exercise so that I can live a long and healthy life. How much better does this sound?
What about the thought when you wake up? Here goes another shitty day…if you think that, how do you think your day will go? You guessed it, it’s going to be shitty because you thought that, and therefore that is what you created. So instead, let’s think this, Here I am, ready to start another day. It’s a clean slate and everything is going to go so well for me today. I am open to all the lessons and experiences this day will bring to me. I can’t wait to see what is in store. This is going to create a different reality for you, and it’s going to change your mindset for the day.
I am not delusional. These things do work if you practice them. We are all here on earth for a limited time. Why would we choose to live it in a way that lends to a miserable existence? What is the point of that? We are all works in progress. Let’s make a pact to at least try. I challenge you to read the book I mentioned and to start or continue your gratitude practice.
It will change your life. It has definately changed mine.
Until next week.