Ever notice how you start your day has a big impact on how the rest of the day goes? We do have the option of changing that at any given moment of the day—but sometimes it feels hard to turn it around in midstream. My philosophy is–it’s better to be proactive and start the day well—that way the momentum continues all through the day.
One way to do that is to start a practice of being grateful the moment you wake up in the morning. I pick at least 3 things that I am grateful for and say thank you to the universe. They can be little things like you are grateful for the fact that you can smell the coffee brewing in the pot that you set the night before and you just love that smell…. to bigger things like your health or the health of your children. It might seem like being grateful is just a way to appreciate the moments more, which is in fact true and has an impact in and of itself. However, as you make gratefulness more of a regular part of your daily routine, you’ll begin to notice changes in yourself; your perspective and overall attitude will change and you will find yourself smiling more—and when you smile, others notice and can’t help but smile themselves. It’s like you all have a secret and everyone is smiling about it. It’s contagious.
Try this and see what happens: Walk into a public place—Costco or the grocery store are good places to do this—and while you are shopping—just smile—to yourself— and then at someone as you pass them in the isle. No words, just a smile. Before you know it, people will be passing you and smiling at YOU! It’s like silently spreading cheer. And all of it started by you waking up this morning saying THANK YOU to the universe for a few small wonders in your life! It feels good to have that kind impact on others around you—power in a most positive way!
Practicing gratefulness takes a little patience and mindfulness on your part, but eventually your mind will begin to move towards gratitude as a default rather than criticism or judgement. You’ll start asking yourself questions like: What else could this mean?” instead of being angry when something comes your way that you may not find welcome immediately. When you are being grateful, it is impossible to be angry too. Try to feel grateful and angry at the same time—it’s not possible! When your heart is filled with gratitude, it brings you to the present moment and the past and the future disappear and there isn’t enough room for anything else. You will find your stress decreases and that your mind is able to focus better. Gratefulness changes your state—and it physiologically changes you. Sometimes when I am feeling truly grateful—I get this really warm feeling that swells up from my heart and locks itself up around the bottom of chin and into my ears. Mindfulness at its best—I think it’s what it means when someone says “I get the warm fuzzies.” I love that feeling. Wishing you a grateful (warm fuzzy) day!