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Consciously practicing gratitude has been a huge part of my healing journey.

My journey to discovering gratitude was interesting. I was never ungrateful as such, but I did have a tendency to see all the things that were going wrong in my life quite easily and I could probably have listed 10 things or more in 10 seconds that I perceived to be missing from my life when things weren’t going my way.

Consistent and constant gratitude practice means that I find it difficult to focus on any negatives nowadays but like everything it takes work.

If you would like to begin writing a gratitude journal simply follow these steps and build on them as you become more comfortable with the practice.

NUMBER 1: BUY A GRATITUDE JOURNAL

It’s nice to have a dedicated journal for your daily gratitude list. I also love checking back on how many wonderful things happen to me every day that we can easily forget. Any notepad will do.

NUMBER 2: START

Start each day with gratitude by writing down 3 things you are grateful for. These can be anything so for example:

  • I’m grateful I can nourish my body with good food
  • I’m grateful for my beautiful son
  • I’m grateful it’s a beautiful day
  • I’m grateful for my job
  • I’m grateful for all the opportunities I have each day
  • Download sample page here

Gratitude diary, gratitude practise, being grateful, gratitude, gratitude diary, being thankfulTHEN

When you are comfortable with that list take it one step further and explore why you are grateful so for example:

  • I’m grateful for my son because he teaches me to be present and being a parent has taught me about the power and meaning of unconditional love
  • I’m so thankful for the good food available to me that I can choose to nourish my body with as good food helps to keep me health in both body and mind
  • I’m grateful for my job because I love what I do and I feel fulfilled and energized after a good days work.
  • I’m so grateful to wake up in good health everyday and for my family’s health and wellbeing. It is something we all value and cherish.

NUMBER 3 GRATITUDE STONE

gratitude stonesEvery night before I go to sleep I pick up my gratitude stone (choose a stone from a garden, park or beach that has meaning for you. Mine is from Dzogchen Beara which holds a very special place in my heart) and I think of what I am most grateful for each day. I absolutely love this part of my day and it means I always go to sleep with a positive thought and a smile on my face.

Remember if you are practicing gratitude it is very hard to have negative thoughts. Saying thank you mindlessly and really feeling grateful are two very different things so try and really feel it in your body and sit into that feeling. The more you do this the easier it will become and I promise gratitude makes life easier even on tough days!

Try it for 3 weeks and let me know how you get on. I would love to hear from you

Comment below

Shine Bright,

Ali xxx

Ring of Kerry

This week’s blog is how animals can provide comfort during times of stress, help us to live in the present and treat others how we would like to be treated ourselves. It fits well with Ali’s Blog ‘Finding Therapy in Every Day Life’

Many people may have seen the picture doing the rounds on Facebook, where apparently a young boy explains to the vet after his dog has been put down why he is not upset. People are born so they can learn how to live a good life like loving everybody all the time and being nice, well dogs already know how to do that so they don’t have to stay as long. Priceless!

Whether the little boy really said this or somebody else did really doesn’t matter – the point is that I think this is true and that it applies to all animals! In my experience animals really do see the best in everyone. Dogs are constantly happy and grateful, often despite what life throws at them. They are quick to forgive and even quicker to love. They don’t hold grudges and they don’t deliberately upset people to make up for how they are feeling at the time. Even if a dog is fearful of someone who treats them badly, they don’t normally let this affect other areas of their life. Even if they have just been mistreated by someone, if someone else who is kind to them takes them for a lovely walk they still enjoy it, they don’t let the past hurt spoil that moment!

Humans can have the tendency sometimes to bring their own troubles into the lives of those around them. However hard we try this can sometimes drag us down and make us feel hurt. Why do people we care about often talk or act in hurtful ways and what can we do about it? Well I think animals can help us with our stress and relationship management in the following ways:

  1. Act like a dog – Be cheerful & grateful for the slightest positive thing in your life (regardless of what else has happened) and see how great you feel. Imagine you have a tail and it is wagging – I guarantee that will bring a smile to your face! As the saying goes – ‘smile and the world smiles with you!’
  2. Pick up on people’s energy like a cat – Stay away from those that have a negative energy and surround yourself with those that give off a positive vibe! I won’t suggest you sit on their laps unless you want to!
  3. Try to see the best in people like a horse does, despite often their most basic needs being misunderstood. In spite of their strength and power, which could easily dominate us humans, most horses are gentle, kind and willing to please. This doesn’t mean you are a pushover, but it will mean that you try and take a positive out of every situation.

Let me know if this works for you and comment below as we would love to hear from you.

CONTACT CATHERINE:

Naturally Animals