Friday, July 21, 2017

Moments of Gratitude

Recently, when I was visiting family and friends in the Pacific Northwest, my friend Ann was telling me how amazing she’s been feeling these days, and how happy she is. While she has had some low moments and a myriad of health issues the last few years, hearing Ann talk about how great she was feeling filled me with joy! Ann’s a trouper, the grins and bears it type. I was curious what she attributed this new-found happiness to. Smiling, she told me started bringing more gratitude into her life and the things that used to upset her no longer do. Three months previously, it was suggested to her to start a gratitude journal, and that’s all it took. She realized how many things go on throughout her day that she feels grateful for. It’s just that she hadn’t taken the time to consider the moments of her day in quite this way. And it’s not about all the big things one would imagine, it’s about the small stuff. Ann began to find joy in the little moments by taking the time to realize how significant the little moments are.

A number of years ago I realized I wasn't taking the time to be grateful for the things in my life that made a difference to me. Instead of keeping a journal, I decided I would temporarily isolate the moment of gratitude and focus on grateful feelings as they happened. I even found myself saying a quiet thank you at times as I enjoyed my moment. I also began reviewing my gratitude moments as I fell asleep each night and found it to be a lovely way to end my day. I have continued to honor gratitude as it happens every day since.

Being grateful moment to moment is sometimes all we have when dealing with whatever we are dealing with. The key is to bring attention to gratitude when we see it – when we feel it. Happiness is a good thing, and I don’t think we take the time to allow ourselves the happiness being grateful can bring. Like Ann said, it’s really just an attitude change, but it has made such a difference. As Ann was sharing with me her new found gratitude practice, I felt myself thinking that I should have shared my gratitude realization with her years ago, and I decided I should share this with you so you, too, may find the happiness being personally grateful has brought to me and now Ann.


Enough is a feast photo courtesy of Irudayam for which I am grateful