29 Nov How to Practice Gratitude
As we close out this month of THANKS, it’s important to highlight the benefits of practicing gratitude as a way to reduce stress.
My mentor and Director of the Yoga Therapy Program, Dr. Larry Payne, always says there is nothing like a daily dose of Vitamin G! He’s so right. When you practice gratitude daily, it becomes harder to focus on stress and negativity. You learn to always find the positive, and focus less on perceived negativity. There is good in every circumstance.
Each day, start your day or end it, take some time to write a list of 3-10 (or more!) things you’re grateful for. They can be as small as your glass of clean water, or big like closing a huge contract. Small wins are big wins 🙂 By putting pen to paper and visualizing the things you have to be grateful for, however simple, it helps you to gain perspective. Do this daily for best results and overall mindset improvement!
Practice acts of service to yourself and others! Karma yoga is the yoga of action. It implies that our actions create outcomes for the greater good. It is a selfless action. The reason why it is important to practice karma yoga with yourself first, is so you can have a clear picture of what YOU need, and build self awareness in order to be capable of giving to others. Share your talents, share your time, do random acts of kindness to strangers, as a show of gratitude to the universe.
Salute the Sun!
Did you know that the movement in yoga of “sun salutations” is literally an act of gratitude?? It’s typically practiced in the morning time, towards the sun, giving thanks for its light and presence. Loving on nature is a really great way to feel grounded and practice gratitude. Sit in the grass, go outside barefoot, touch the trees, smell the flowers, let the sun shine directly on you. When you connect with nature, it releases endorphins in the body, and helps you to feel connected and gracious.
Gratitude is the attitude! I live by this value, so eloquently stated by my favorite artist, Londrelle. “With a heart full of gratitude, and a mind full of peace. That’s how you should live, that’s how you should be….that’s how you should love, that’s how you stay free.”
The Challenge: Start that list now! Write down 10 things you’re grateful for today.