Three Signs You Need A Gratitude Overhaul
(And Three Simple Solutions!)
Seems like everywhere you turn lately, someone has written something about gratitude. Particularly this time of year with several traditional holidays about to ensue, we are frequently reminded to count our blessings making gratitude sound like a bumper sticker slogan. Expressing gratitude on a consistent basis CAN create magic. And on occasion expressing gratitude can also seem like a chore, particularly when you feel soured about things not going exactly how you planned.
Warning: that is precisely the perfect time to do it!
But herein lays the problem. Let’s say, for example, that you didn’t get the promotion or the raise or just substitute anything else you seem to be lacking at the moment. And you are really mired in the “not enough” feeling. Trying to “pretend” that you are happy and grateful will likely backfire because the “feeling” of your expression will be out of alignment with pure intention.
And then when you feel no better for having spewed out a gratitude list, you may want to give up declaring this gratitude stuff as nothing but a bunch of hogwash! How do I know this? Because I have experienced it! You see, beyond the words, the secret to expressing gratitude is in the feeling and emotion below the surface.
If you are feeling like you are bored with gratitude and not getting that hit of magic it can hold, here are some ways to recognize that your gratitude regimen needs an overhaul and what to do about it!
Gratitude Style: Making The Trade
This style of gratitude is based on the “give me”. It is like saying to the Universe, o.k., I’ll be grateful for this if you give me that. And the “that” is the thing you feel you are lacking. Expressing true gratitude can actually get you the “that”, but only if and when you are not consciously making the trade.
Solution: The Gratitude Warrior!
Thank everyone from store clerks to the mail man. Pay someone’s parking meter that has run out, help an elderly person across the street or stop, listen and tip the a Capella group singing in the subway. In other words, pay it forward and then watch out for the boomerang of gratitude coming right back at you!
Gratitude Style: The Buzz Kill
“Oh, thanks for everything. I really appreciate that leaf!” Sarcasm is a real buzz kill on the road to true gratitude! HOWEVER, I am a big believer in starting where you are (you really don’t have a choice in this one). I’ve started from this place and to be honest it felt good to express a sense of irreverence and dissatisfaction. And then something shifted. Amidst the not-so-gratefulness grew softness in my attitude until I truly felt lighter and sincere thanks.
Solution: The Thank You Rant
Simply start where you are. If you feel like yelling, yell. If you feel like sounding sour, be sour. Express however you feel and say the words “thank you” before it. For example, “thanks….I appreciate missing that traffic light which will now make me late.” It may sound silly, but until you release the gunk, you cannot feel true gratitude. Do this until you feel the subtlest of shifts – even laughter – and then move on to the blessings abound!
Gratitude Style: Bored Out of My Mind
I was in this rut for a bit. Particularly when there was the trend on Facebook where people were challenging others to list five daily things they were grateful for. So the gratitude hit parade began with; family, friends and home. Don’t get me wrong, that’s great – but a bit more effort would amp up the miracles and kick boredom to the curb.
Solution: Gratitude Squared!
So it is far more effective (adding more happy to your life!) to state the “reason” why you are grateful for a particular thing. Instead of creating a long list of gratitude, choose only one thing you are grateful for and list at least three reasons why you feel gratitude for that person, place or thing. Bam!! Gratitude Squared! For example: I am grateful for my dog because she always loves to cuddle and when I’m having a bad day it makes me feel loved.
Here’s a fill in the blank 3-step formula to follow:
Paula G. Rosario
All Authenticity Celebrate Choice Courage Create Energy Shift Frustration Fun Goals Goddess Grace Gratitude Growth Guilty Pleasures Health Heart Imagination Imagine Inspiration Life Lessons Love Loving Miracle Mother-goddess Negative Statements Opposites Oprah Overwhelm Positive Statements Power Of Intention Rally Show Up For You Stay-at-home Moms Support Survival Thank You The Edge Of Madness Thrival Time Tv Vision Visualize What's Wrong? Woowoo Strategies For Success Working Moms Yin & Yang
What They Are Saying About Paula
Laura West, President & Chief Creative Officer, www.centerforjoyfulbusiness.com