No matter what is going on in life, it is important to realize how much you have to be thankful for. In the hustle and bustle of everyday routines, it can be easy to glaze over many of the most important things in your life, simply because you are used to them being there.
This Thanksgiving season, we implore you to take a few moments and acknowledge all that you have to be grateful for. Like most of us, you’re probably busy and don’t have a great deal of extra time in your schedule, so we have compiled some easy ways for you to express gratitude on a daily basis that can take only about five minutes. Research shows that individuals who actively practice showing gratitude are significantly happier and overall more satisfied with life over those who do not – so these activities are incredibly beneficial.
Easy Ways to Demonstrate Gratitude
There are dozens of ways to demonstrate gratitude, however, we have chosen three simple ways to put your feelings of appreciation into action that can take only minutes each day. These few minutes can make a profound difference in how you feel each day and how you treat others, and they couldn’t be easier.
This practice has gotten more popular in recent years, and it’s probably not what you think. While the idea of keeping a journal to hold all of your private thoughts might be a great hobby, gratitude journaling is something different.
Instead of summarizing each day in a journal, in your gratitude journal, you simply write three specific things that you are thankful for that day. It sounds incredibly simple, right? When you make this habit a regular practice, some amazing things can happen. Studies have shown that individuals who keep a gratitude journal report feeling happier, more grateful, and significantly less stressed overall.
By taking less than five minutes a day and writing down three things you appreciate from that day, you are shifting your mind and your focus to the good. Because each day is unique, you may have big moments of appreciation in your journal – like a promotion at work; or small moments of appreciation – like seeing a rainbow after a rainy day. No matter what it is that you appreciate, shifting your attention to the good things in your life will train your brain to seek out moments of joy. When you need a pick-me-up, take a look at your gratitude journal and see all the things that have made you happy in the past. They will evoke positive memories and this practice is genuinely good for your spirit.
That’s right – not text, Facebook, or Instagram. Actual pen to paper letter-writing! This might sound somewhat cheesy and archaic, but there’s a lot of benefit to doing this. First, taking a moment to thoughtfully consider a person or thing that is important to you, then briefly jotting down why you are so grateful for that person or thing is invaluable. Yes, we said person or thing! You don’t have to actually send these letters, so depending on where you want to draw your focus that day, you could even write it to your dog or your favorite pair of shoes. The point of the exercise is to take the time to show appreciation to a single person or thing you appreciate and explain why.
If you choose to write a letter and you follow through by sending it to a loved one, this beautiful expression of gratitude can have ripple effects, easily and swiftly spreading feelings of joy and love. So if you are writing a letter to a person, you may as well send it and make that person feel special (in our humble opinion).
This activity is wonderful because it allows you to focus completely on something or someone that you may occasionally take for granted. Your spouse, your children, your parents, your best friends – many of these people are special to us but sometimes, we simply fail to tell them exactly why they are special and what we love about them. Feeling appreciation for someone but not sharing it is like having a gift for them, but never giving it to them.
Try writing a short letter to a loved one today, and give the gift of appreciation.
You may be wondering why we consider meditation to be a great way to show gratitude. For us, it is simple. Meditation is a quiet and humble way to show gratitude to yourself. It is a moment that is relaxed and intentional, and it allows you to pull all of your focus into one place for a short window of time and to just breathe.
Some people assume that meditation must consist of a lengthy process with candles and music, when in fact, there is no “right“ way to meditate. Simply take a moment that is uniquely yours, close your eyes, and breathe. For some, focusing on a single thought or phrase helps focus the mind; for others, they concentrate on the idea of clean air traveling in and out of their lungs. If you struggle to focus, try opening your eyes and looking at a single object in the room and focus all of your energy and attention on it.
The point of this exercise, even if you only do it for five minutes, is to treat yourself to a moment of quiet and peace, which is restorative to your mind, your body, and your spirit. Those who meditate on a regular basis tend to feel better about themselves, about others, and overall behave more kindly out in the world. Isn’t that what we all need a little bit more of?
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We believe in being good to ourselves, to others, and to the planet. We are advocates of natural solutions and practices, and when individuals need a little help achieving a healthy state of mind, we provide safe, legal, organic, non-psychoactive products to help them on their wellness journey.
We wish you a season of true appreciation that lasts throughout the year, and we are here to point you in the right direction if you are looking for holistic products to help you along the way. Visit The Hemp Doctor today!