The past month, I have been experiencing frequent energy dips and recurring back pain. There were days when inspite of a long list of things to do, I just wanted to sleep. To make it worse, productivity was close to rock bottom. With each passing day, it felt frustrating.
We have all been there before. There are times when we are so on top of things. And there are times when we are not. When the downside continues for a bit, it’s easy to start becoming negative. When our goals keep getting postponed and we can quickly get into the ‘shame or blame’ syndrome. We will either feel ashamed or we will blame others for our situation. In such scenarios, I tend to veer towards shame. But of late, something began to shift.
An improvement I have been trying to make in my life is to stay grateful especially when things do not go as per plan. The past month, instead of fighting the feelings of frustration and anger, I have focused on gratitude. As a result, even on days when I have done absolutely nothing, I have always gone to sleep with a smile on my face. I have come to realize that Gratitude is such a powerful gift that each one of us must practice to lead our lives with joy.
Here are 3 ways to practice gratitude in our day to day lives.
1. Write down 3 things we feel grateful for, every day
This can be our family, our partner, our children, our health, the city we live in or even the weather. We so often take things for granted without realizing how lucky we are to have that in the first place. Writing this down or even taking a few minutes to breathe it in when we start our day can help stave off feelings of shame or blame and begin our days with positivity.
2. Spend time connecting with what we feel grateful for
In my case, my daughter is the biggest source of gratitude in my life. Of late, I have been taking her on walks and feeling so very present in those moments. No matter how terrible our days can be, when we connect with our source of gratitude, it can make us feel present and connected in the moment. Sometimes it need not be with a person, it can also be with nature or anything else that we are grateful for. Connecting with our source of gratitude can bring a great sense of peace in our hearts.
3. Reach out to Community for support
We all have our community that we can reach out to for support. For me, it is my coaching community and my toastmasters community that energizes me and brings me back towards feeling grateful. We often forget that whatever frustrations we are going through, many others are going through the same. People are often much more willing to help and support when asked for help. All we need to do is to reach out. Knowing we are supported can bring a deep sense of gratitude.
I believe that all of us can get past whatever rough patches we go through, from time to time. Gratitude can be a powerful tool to help us navigate our life’s journey with a song in our hearts and a smile on our faces. I wish each one of you more gratitude in your day to day lives.