Gratitude As A Daily Practice

Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving holiday takes place in the United States on the fourth Thursday of November each year. It's a time of gathering with families and friends.

We give thanks and eat lots of food. The "lots of food" part is always important. It's a celebration of the abundance in our lives.

Thanksgiving is a non-religious holiday celebrated around the country. Most people have the day off and enjoy a paid holiday.

Gratitude Beyond Seasonal Holidays

Besides eating, giving thanks is a big part of Thanksgiving. Studies show that having a sense of thanksgiving and gratitude can make a difference in our lives all year round. When we're conscious of gratitude as a part of our daily lives, it has many benefits.

According to research from the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley, an increased sense of appreciation can benefit our health and wellness with better sleep, lower blood pressure, happier relationships, and increased resiliency.  Some researchers have found that practicing gratitude can strengthen our immune system.

 
We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures.
— Thorton Wilder
 

Four Ideas To Share Gratitude With Others

Given these positive effects, perhaps we should get busy practicing gratitude. This is a perfect time of year to tune up our efforts.

Gratitude isn't only about looking around and seeing what we're grateful for – our service and activities are also a part of gratitude when we share with others.

For the holidays, we can:

1) Volunteer at a winter homeless shelter.

2) Spend time with the elderly in a Senior Center or a nursing home.

3) Donate time at a local reading program for children.

4) Provide services for rescue and animal shelters. They are always in need of volunteers to help.

Make Gratitude A Part Of Your Daily Life

Students of The Radiance Technique® (TRT®) have an excellent way to expand upon gratitude within the simplicity of the use of the TRT® hands-onRadiant Touch® is always there, day and night, and provides access to supportive, universal energy beyond the ups and downs of daily life.

In The New Expanded Reference Manual of The Radiance Technique®, Authentic Reiki®, Third Edition by Dr. Barbara Ray, Ph.D. — the entry on Gratitude is found on page 106:

GRATITUDE - In higher consciousness refers to an inner energy which expresses from within, with no external cause, spontaneous feelings of wholeness, of fullness, of radiance.  The Radiance Technique® accesses this inner energy which has within itself the quality of gratitude, different from lower energies of cause and effect.  Gratitude is an energy of the soul, of the Inner Heart. For accessing and expanding upon this quality in you, use for extended times in Front Position #1. 

 

Four Ideas To Expand Your Gratitude

Since gratitude makes a significant contribution to our well-being – here are some ideas to help as gratitude reminders.

1) Tape a note to your bathroom mirror to remind you as you are getting ready for work or going to bed. Something for which you are thankful.

2) Create a gratitude journal. Jot down something you are grateful for and write a a few lines about it.

Maybe you have artistic talents? Perhaps you would rather draw or photograph a little reminder of gratitude?

3) Buy a notebook for art journaling of gratitude. The image in this post of Gratitude is a practice is an example of art journaling. 

4) Take a photo each day that captures your sense of gratitude. It doesn't have to be grandiose like traveling to a foreign, exotic land. Your photo can be from your own backyard.

How about the curve of your kitty's tail?
The floppy ear of your dog?
Maybe a leaf found on your path?

How about a photo of a coffee drink? If you have gratitude for it, go for it.

What ideas do you have for gratitude and thanksgiving?