It’s easy to get so caught up living day-to-day that we don’t take a moment to really appreciate what we already have in our lives. There’s nothing wrong with wanting more, desiring bigger, dreaming grander – as long as you take the time to recognise how wonderful your life already is.
One of my mentors once said, “There are billions of people, right now, all around the world, who – if they could swap places with you for just one day – would be living a life so far beyond anything they could have ever imagined. Your day-to-day life is someone else’s wildest dreams come true and much, much more.”
Imagine How Others Would Feel
Now rather than just read that sentence, I want you to really feel it; think about those people and imagine they DO have your life for a day – no matter how dismal you think your life is. Imagine how amazed and grateful they would feel each moment for all the things you experience on a daily basis – a roof over your head, a bed to sleep in, food and drinks, clean water, a safe environment. Just imagine how they would feel in that moment – do you think grateful may be one of the words to describe their emotions?
Consciously Give Thanks
Well, gratitude has to be an integral step on your journey to a life of abundance. You simply will not experience all the richness you desire without expressing gratitude on a daily basis. In her book Simple Abundance, Sarah Ban Breathnach says, “You simply will not be the same person two months from now after consciously giving thanks each day for the abundance that exists in your life. And you will have set in motion an ancient spiritual law: The more you have and are grateful for, the more will be given you”.
I have found that a Gratitude Journal, or Grateful Journal, is the best way to do this. Basically, what you do is take a blank journal or notebook (you can decorate it if you wish) and at the end of every day, just before you go to sleep, reflect on your day. Take the time to write down at least five things that have occurred that you can be grateful for. Now these don’t have to be earth shattering, mind blowing, incredible events – it can be as simple as “I am so grateful I watched the sunrise this morning because the oranges and the pinks splashed across the clouds were beautiful”; or, “I am so grateful for the wind and the way it makes the trees dance”; or, “I am grateful that I tidied my desk and have some space to work without clutter”; or, “I’m grateful I found a $20 note in the pocket of my old jeans”. Sometimes if you’ve had a day you’d rather forget, you may write what I once did: “I am so grateful today is over and I’m going to bed”!
Something wonderful begins to happen when you use a Gratitude Journal. At first, you may be like me and you’ll just be nodding off to sleep when suddenly you sit bolt upright in bed, grab your journal and think – “goodness – what happened to me today that I can be grateful for?” Then over time, certain things will happen during the day and immediately afterwards you will think, “That would be a good thing to write in my Gratitude Journal”.
A Shift in Your Focus
Then you’ll find things will happen during your day and you’ll think in the moment – “Oh, I can be grateful for this” and you’ll start to feel those feelings of gratitude on a more consistent basis. Then as time goes by, you’ll begin to find yourself looking for things to be grateful for. And guess what, whatever you look for, whatever you give your attention to, whatever you focus on, you will then begin to see more of in your life. So there’ll come a time when there will be a whole shift in your focus. As you continually look for things to be grateful for, you’ll find so many more things begin to appear in your life and start occurring, for you to be grateful for.
I remember one of my clients coming back to me the week after I had shared this strategy and saying, “Sandy, I had a Gratitude Journal. I used it all the time, but then my husband had a car accident and life got busy and I just stopped using it. After our last session I decided to find my journal and searched high and low. I finally found it and as I put it in my hands, it naturally fell open, and in the pages of the journal was $500 cash. I must have put it there years ago and forgotten about it”. Well, she certainly had something to write about in her Gratitude Journal that night!
Your Key to Riches
Gratitude is your key to riches. Gratitude will immediately start expanding your energy and your life! Once you begin to use your Gratitude Journal on a daily basis your life will change forever. Why not start right now and begin a list of 25 things that you are grateful for already!