Words of gratitude?
You hear a lot from others, don’t you about how grateful you should be?
“Be grateful for small mercies” or “you should be grateful you are not poor” or “think yourself lucky you have got a job or your health”
Insert the appropriate phrase; I am sure you get the picture.
Those common, trip off the tongue, words of gratitude, how lucky I am to be alive, how lucky I am to have food to eat, how lucky I am to have a job or whatever it was I should be eternally grateful for.
I am ashamed to say, as a younger woman I never really took any of it as seriously as I should have.
To me it was something your elders trotted out when they wanted to make a point about you being an ungrateful little so and so.
So, naturally it went in one ear and out the other.
It is only lately and for no particular reason that strikes me, words of gratitude seem to have taken on a greater significance in my life.
Perhaps it is because I can now hear all the time, the much younger generation behind me, dismissing those words of wisdom in the same cavalier fashion I did.
Poo-pooing parents and grandparents and elders, just like I did at their age.
Their arrogance and sense of invincibility matched with a “nothing can touch me” attitude pervading their snorts of mocking.
The “old fogeys” are just rattling on.
I find myself wondering why it has become so important to me.
I think it is because it has just dawned on me I might have become the “old fogey”.
Perhaps it is some rite of passage as you enter your middle years.
Perhaps there is a switch in your brain that moves from selfish younger person to more thoughtful person when you hit middle age or your hormones change.
For sure, it’s a reaction to life events or what you see going on in the world around you.
Loss of people close to you, reactions to war or poverty from the news or something happening in your local community.
As you get older you have seen more to thank your lucky stars for.
Whatever it is, it’s become significant for me and I am grateful (you see what I mean?) to have had my eyes opened at this point in my life.
So what has that got to do with you?
A lot as it happens.
I feel absolutely fully, completely and deeply, expressing words of gratitude should be the next stage you move to mentally after you sort out your mindset.
In your journey towards your business idea, you want as much mental preparation as you can muster because
If you cannot be grateful for the most basic things in life then you will never appreciate what comes later
Well, I have been reading lately the work of a lady called Melody Beattie, a very famous writer in the world of self-development from the USA.
A woman who survived abandonment, kidnapping, sexual abuse, drug and alcohol addiction, divorce, and the death of a child.
So if she can find things in life to be grateful for, then so can you and I
Her brand of gratitude is spoken like this:
And I rather like the explanation from Harvard Medical School…
excerpted from The Oxford English Dictionary
Late Middle English from Old French, or from Medieval Latin gratitudo, from Latin gratus ‘pleasing, thankful’.
The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
Or as the modern day personal development queen Oprah Winfrey expresses it perfectly
The very reason I believe you need to understand why this concept is so important to grasp after my number one, mindset change
So onto some techniques to
You won’t start truly feeling gratitude until you start practising it.
Here are my favourite methods
Gratitude Box or Jar
This idea is one of my favourite things and particularly good to embark on at the beginning of a new year.
But you can start today if you want to, no time like the present
Instead of making resolutions you just know you won’t keep, how about filling up a box or a jar with your daily words of gratitude.
Then at the end of a week, month or year you can clearly see what wonderful things have been in your life.
A simple walk, a conversation with a friend, a problem sorted with a family member. The sound of a bird singing.
Children laughing and having simple joy in their life.
We take so many things for granted without giving them a second thought but incrementally you realise you really do have a lot to be thankful for.
You would have just glossed over them without thinking if you hadn't recorded them.
A lovely thing to send to friends, family and colleagues when you want to express words of gratitude to them.
Amazon sell them I think, find someone who makes them perhaps
A gratitude journal is a simple tool to write your thoughts down.
Some people advocate daily writing while others swear by a weekly brain dump of all the things, big or small that have passed through your life that week.
You can do whatever is good for you and suits your lifestyle. add something here
Here is a link to some gratitude journals I thought you might like:
My favourite one is the Tiny Buddha one with questions, prompts and quotes in. It appeals to me the most.
There are lots of them out there, you will for sure find one to suit you.
So in your new gratitude journal you will probably initiate the use of gratitude affirmations.
An affirmation is simply a statement of something.
It is a good tool to frame your thoughts and write down exactly what you mean and how you want to say it.
Here are a few obvious ones to get the cogs in your brain moving, they are for use in the present tense.
If you prefix your statements with words of gratitude for everything you be/do/have then you will find it easier to create your affirmations.
And so on…it is all going to be very personal to you and your circumstances.
For some help about how to successfully write your own words of gratitude affirmations head to the guided meditation site for some great tips.
And finally some words of gratitude to help you on your journey, different to affirmations but equally as meaningful...
I love quotes because they can say just want you to in a beautifully succinct way.
Perfect for illustrating what you want to express in your gratitude cards perhaps?
Here are 10 of my favourite gratitude quotes; why not sprinkle them in with your affirmations in your journal...
Life is short, try to to more grateful