As 2019 kicked off and I was working on my goals, I started reading various blog posts to get me focused. I stumbled across a post from the maker of the daily agenda I use, Ink+Volt. There was suddenly a virtual smack on the back of the head to listen up.
Gratitude. Such a simple concept, yet often a challenging practice. As I dove in and read about the benefits, I was blown away. Stronger immune system. Lower cholesterol. Cardiac health. Better sleep. Alertness. Self control. More forgiving. Patient. Hopeful.
Then I came across an author, Ann Voskamp, who I felt summed it up perfectly. “Joy is a function of gratitude — and gratitude is a function of perspective.”
I realized I needed a change. I armed myself with tools and I grabbed on to gratitude for dear life. After a year of making a concerted effort, I can tell you that it makes a difference in my daily life. Can I still be a jerk? Sure. However, I’m more mindful of how I interact with others and what is really important in my life.
So, are you ready to enhance your gratitude? Here are some tools to start.
The Benefits of Gratitude for Your Mind, Body, and Happiness
The blog post that started it all for me. It made me realize how gratitude impacts your overall well-being. The article also includes tips on how to practice gratitude each day.
The Five Minute Journal
This is my go-to. I personally use the app version. I love that I can take photos and add them to my entry for the day. I’ve given the actual journal as a gift to several people.
Letters for a Year of Gratitude
These made Oprah’s Favorite Things 2018 list. I’ve given these as gifts, too. And I’ve used them myself. The booklet gives you 52 letters to write, one for each week of the year.
I’ll admit that I didn’t get all 52 written in 2019. I will say that when I do send one, it warms my heart when I get a text message or call from the person telling me how it made their day.
Podcast – Gratitude Advantage
Michael Hyatt is an author, speaker and podcaster focusing on leadership. This particular episode covers gratitude. I like a comment he makes at the end: “There’s nothing negative that comes from gratitude. It’s all positive, and the more we do it, the better we get at it and the more benefits we’ll receive.”