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Grains of Gratitude
By Kristie Kennedy
Breath by breath, inhale and exhale deeply…
This is how I intentionally pause during a highly demanding and merciless schedule. In order to cultivate a lifestyle of gratitude it is vital to slow down long enough to express thankfulness on a daily basis. I am no stranger to adversity from childhood to present. I believe the key to abundance and a hopeful perspective amid challenging times is to treasure the magnificent moments buried beneath the minutes.
There are countless benefits associated with gratitude ranging from enhanced sleep, improved relationships along with better psychological and physical health. If you desire to become more grateful it first begins with acknowledging the desire to change. Once you are aware of the need to create a new norm, ask yourself, are you ready to make the commitment daily until it becomes second nature? There will be temptations to revert back to old mental paradigms. Who have you invited to support this change and hold you accountable? Additionally, create a list of seven powerful reasons that this change is important to you.
Here are 3 simple ways to cultivate a spirit of gratefulness in your life to get you started:
1) Purchase a gratitude journal: It is easy to lose sight of the many blessings you have in your life when you choose not to reflect in a quiet space to give thanks. I love to create what I call, grains of gratitude based on the current calendar month. If it’s November I would start the day with 11 grains of appreciation and before bed journal 11 grains of appreciation for things I encountered throughout my day.
2) One a day: Think about the special people that are close to your heart, especially if you are married. In order to avoid taking our family and friends for granted, verbally express one thing to them that you are thankful for. I always say, “It’s the little things that make a BIG difference!” What you appreciate, appreciates!
3) Serve the less fortunate: This is one act that keeps my heart continuously in a humble posture. Whenever I interact or see the homeless I immediately consider how rich my life is. I begin to give thanks for a roof over my head, shoes on my back and food on the table. One day I witnessed an older man bathing on the street, and I realized I took something as simple as the ability to shower in private for granted.
The more grateful you are, the more attractive you will be to others. Honestly, how many people do you know long to be in the presence of complainers? Everyone is fighting their own private battles and you can choose to be the wind beneath their wings or the rain on their parade. In the words of Melody Beattie “Gratitude turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.”
Let’s put into practice what we have learned and affirm the power of gratitude:
*I feel an abundance of gratitude for everything I have and receive every day.
*I clearly see the beauty of life that flourishes around me.
*I am so grateful for every person and everything in my life.
*My needs and desires are generously met. For this I am thankful.
*At the end of each day, I take a moment to reflect and be grateful.
Kristie Kennedy is a licensed image enhancement consultant and certified entrepreneurial leadership coach. She is skilled in four areas of personal development: mindset, momentum, motivation and potential maximization. Ms. Kennedy has a passion for helping leaders who have reached a mental plateau to turn their cants into cans and their dreams into plans. Her life is a testament that it is 100% possible to shift from mediocrity to magnificence one bold action step at a time. www.kristiekennedy.com
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