The Gratitude Experience

Practicing gratitude is more than saying “Thank You”. it is a state of mind, a presence that must be practiced to be learnt. If you are feeling like there is something missing your life; it is likely gratitude.

Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining – it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn’t solve any problems. – Zig Ziglar

Last year I had started the daily habit of sharing my gratitude on my Facebook wall. Every night before going to bed I would share what I was grateful for during that particular day. This practice was very inspiring and I had learned a lot about watching life from a gracious perspective and frame of mind. I had found that by focusing on the better things in life, I was not dwelling on the negative. I was becoming easier to inspire. My mindset had changed positively and my moods began to level out. After 6 months of this deliberate daily practice, I saw gratitude in almost everything I saw my life -I even found gratitude in the bad things!

Unfortunately, over time I developed a habit of quantifying my gratitude based on the likes and comments I would receive from my posts on Facebook. I would selectively only post gratitude that I felt would be more important to others and not necessarily the most important to me. I was trying to place numbers on my gratitude and quantify it. I made the decision to stop sharing my daily gratitude on Facebook because I was doing it for the wrong reason. I had forgotten about how my interpretation of what gratitude is. Gratitude is not a popularity contest, it is to be felt and shared without any expectation of return. Gratitude cannot be quantified, it can only be qualified.

All was not lost though. What I learned over my 6 months of practiced gratitude is that I understand how each event in my life has its own place. I am in control of my happiness and I feel that I have value in helping others to be happy and gracious. The other side of practiced gratitude is that I seek value in everyone I meet -even if they have done wrong to me.

Just like anger, sadness and happiness; gratefulness is a feeling that we have deep inside of us. Unfortunately, gratitude is not practiced enough so we do not know how to express it properly -if at all. We go about life feeling empty and pulling blame to try and patch the hole in our soul. All along, it was a lack of gratitude that was pulling us down. Until we immerse ourselves in it, we will never really understand what the power of being grateful can do to our lives. Gratitude is not just saying thank you, gratitude is more than just appreciation. Gratitude is a feeling of fullness and seeing the best in every opportunity, person and situation -good or bad. When we experience that real gracious fullness, we never have another bad day again. Start practicing gratitude now. Grab a journal and write 3 things you are grateful for every day and I guarantee, your day, every day will be that much more fulfilled.

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