November is the month of appreciation and expressing gratitude for the things and people you hold dearly. Life can get busy and sometimes it’s hard to remember to practice gratitude on a daily basis. The good news is, giving thanks doesn’t have to be tedious! It can be as simple as appreciating the familiar parts of your life.
Civil rights activist, feminist and writer Audre Lorde once said, “We are all more blind to what we have than to what we have not”.
Upgrading to the latest iPhone or meeting up with your besties may have lost their initial spark from when they were first ignited but these are exactly the little things you can appreciate. The addition of worries and negative feelings about life affect you more if you are missing acknowledgement and appreciation of what you already have. Here are 3 simple and easy ways to practice gratitude.
Write Down Something That Made Your Day
Starting a gratitude journal is so simple you can start...right now! Taking a minute everyday to write down something that made you happy can be hard at first but the trick is, don’t think too hard. As you get used to it, it will surprisingly become difficult to put the pen down. You’ll soon start to realize that good things are right in front of you.
Be Open to Learning About Others
Talking to people and actively being present is a skill that many people don’t choose to exercise. You can learn so much about people and, understanding their perspective can open you up to a new wave of appreciation. We are all main characters of our own lives, and sometimes, it is hard to fully understand another person’s story. Talking to others can help you find happiness in a lot of things that never crossed your mind. So...get out there and talk to new people.
Small Acts of Kindness
A majority of the time, we are on the receiving side of this without noticing. Giving is very fulfilling. A simple act like complimenting your friend’s outfit or offering to pay for the stranger behind you at Starbucks can bring them AND you a moment of joy. Recognize that your own actions are something to be proud of. When you realize the fulfillment of giving, you begin to appreciate others more.
As people grow older, we naturally start to view things differently. Responsibilities and other adult things can cloud our minds as we prioritize what is important. As those things pile up, it gets more difficult to find happiness in what we already have. Even a little gratitude practice every now and then helps with mental health can brighten up your day. It has the ability to change how you see the world and find happiness in anything. So, take some time out of your seemingly hectic schedule to be grateful for the things you already have.
<3 Hazel B.