We’ve shared an incredible summer together, filled with sun therapy, new experiences, and a healthy dose of self-reflection. As we transition into September and embrace the season of new beginnings, autumn resets our inner clocks. We start to reevaluate our values, intentions, plans, habits, and every other element on which we build our realities. After the summer of gratitude, this is the time to extend gratitude rituals to the rest of the year and embrace the energy of gratitude as a way of being.
From Doing to Being
We all know that feeling when we come to a home filled with good energy. There is something warm, cozy, and open in this experience of pure, positive energy. But how can we bring this kind of energy to our life? The answer: through gratitude.
We may associate gratitude with saying and writing “thank you”, or with giving gifts to express our appreciation, but there is a deeper meaning to it. Learning how to be grateful, in addition to acting with gratitude, can transform our life. When we embody gratitude, we gain a sense of meaning; feel more connected to others; and turn towards authenticity and positivity like sunflowers turning to the sun.
Being grateful is a crucial part of developing a growth mindset. Gratitude is our inner compass. It helps us overcome self-limiting beliefs; gain a more positive perspective on our life; show ourselves some self-compassion and self-love; and deal with the challenges on the way to accomplishing our goals.
Gratitude has the power to heal. It inspires us to be more creative and shifts our perspective towards positivity, improving our mood, health, and overall well-being. Gratitude is a force of good––it’s an energy and a way of being. Being in a state of gratitude is about embracing this energy and letting it flow through you toward the world.
Practicing the Energy of Gratitude Living
The state of gratitude is like expressing gratitude to the entire universe for being a part of it. As broad as it sounds, it can be as simple and ordinary as enjoying small pleasures—the bite of an apple from the local farmer’s market, the sunlight reaching out to you through the window blinds, a warm hug from your friend. The most ordinary things in the world are treasure troves of gratitude.
Gratitude isn’t only about appreciating the good things and the pleasures in life. We can also share our gratitude for rebuilding our life after whatever changes we have to deal with. For learning from failures, letting go of past mistakes, and forgiving ourselves. For finding the inner strength to deal with challenges day in, day out. Even in our darkest hours, gratitude and thinking focused on what’s good can help us. Rainer Maria Rilke said: “Let everything happen to you, beauty and terror. Just keep going. No feeling is final.”
Gratitude allows us to accept that time passes and changes everything, which may bring a dash of sadness or fear of the unknown. Yet everything that transpires in our lives opens space for something new we get to look forward to. New opportunities, new discoveries, new journeys. When we’re in a state of gratitude, we get unstuck from getting lost in nostalgia or daydreaming about the future. We become grounded here, in the present, and feel that it’s enough.
How to Be in the State of Gratitude
If you want to channel the energy of gratitude, focus on the good and surround yourself with what brings you joy and stillness. Walk, reflect, and talk more about gratitude. Prioritize it, commit to it, and let it become a central part of your life that inspires everything else. Building gratitude-centered routines and rituals is the best way to experience this positive energy of living. Create a gratitude loop, develop an attitude of appreciation, and stay in the habit of practicing gratitude.
Simple activities, such as noticing the good things and filling out the gratitude journal can help you embrace the energy of gratitude living. Embed gratitude into your everyday living by being more mindful and present. Experience the world through your senses. Say “thank you” out loud, this instant. Appreciate the gift of being a human being.
Practice self-love in all kinds of ways, be it rest, sleep, or your favorite hobby. Encourage yourself and boost your self-esteem through positive affirmations. Even in the most challenging times, these positive statements will retrain your beliefs and negative thought patterns and refocus your perspective on opportunities and possibilities instead of limitations.
Pay special attention to your language and inner talk. How we speak is usually accompanied by our non-verbal expressions. The grateful motions and facial expressions are nodding, smiling, eye-gazing, half-bowing. Scientist Paul Ekman discovered that voluntary facial expressions can generate changes in our emotions––when you consciously express your gratitude physically, you can also feel it more.
Finally, practice gratitude at work. The nurturing positive attitude you bring to work inspires you and your coworkers. It can boost productivity and lead to an overall improvement in workplace relationships.
If you are struggling with your practice, use visual reminders to remind yourself to be grateful. Be it post-its with gratitude quotes and messages, a wallpaper on your phone, or the Choose Gratitude print on your wall, visual reminders are a great way to keep the attitude of gratitude with you at all times.
Spiritual practices, a shift in your mindset, and small acts of gratitude pave the way to the energy of gratitude living. This energy helps you live with intention, stay optimistic, and share your kindness with others. If you want to feel at home in your life and in your heart, embrace gratitude as more than a simple daily habit or a regular practice. Make it a lifestyle.
Photo by @myleenvel