Today I will talk about someting that has had a big impact in my life, around and after my turning point.
You will also see that gratitude connects with goals and why, and we’ll be moving outside of the box with a small challenge.
Two years ago I got a tip from a friend who wrote down five things per day that she was grateful for. And since she started doing that, things changed in her life. Positive changes. I thought, ”five things per day should be easy”, and I started doing it myself.
But my new inspiration lasted only for a week or so. Well, not entirerly, I did become more aware of how important it is to pause a few times per day and to be grateful for things in life, both big and small things, but I didn´t write them down. And I believe the actual note is the key to real and sustaining change.
So, as of today, I am starting to write them down, but not five things, instead I am going for three. Why? Because five things were too many when I tried it last time. Instead of feeling inspired every day, I was stressed to have to come up with five things, and I think that´s partly the reason I quit doing it. So, this time it is three.
”Mindfulness” is something that´s popular right now, and when I was thinking about it, it is actually gratitude. Or the modern version of ”seize the day”. From what I can see anyway. Pause and live in the moment. Be grateful for what you have, what you are able to do, who you appreciate and so on. It is just different names and tools to reach the same result.
So what results are we looking for? Well, for me, I didn´t know what changes to expect, if any at all. This was just one of my new things that I wanted to try out, curious as usual. But things started to happen. For some reason I found that the ”small things” was easier to work with. It could be the nice weather, a hug from my wife or kids, a phone call from a friend, a nice meal, a good drink or my Swedish tobacco, ”snus”. Yes, even if I am working with a health product, I still appreciate a beer and a snus 😊.
What I have discovered over this period of time is that I focus alot less on bad stuff when pausing to appreciate the good stuff. Even though they seem small and regular. It is actually a fantastic feeling, and you need to try it yourself in order to understand it fully.
So here is my challenge to you:
As of today, start writing down three things per day that you are grateful for in your life. Do it for 30 consecutive days, and send me a message with any results that you have experienced. Feel free to post it in the comment section, or send it as a private message. It is up to you. Or maybe you are already doing this, and want to share your experience? Remember, we are here to inspire each other, and others.
This will be a small ”out of the box” exercise, but remember that these words and things are for your eyes only if you choose so. You don´t need to share it with anyone if you don´t want to. As I have mentioned before, we are looking for something new, we are looking for change. Break the pattern in your daily life and new things will start to happen. This exercise is an effective way to start, even if it may look insignificant to you. You´ll be surprised of the results.
Well, for me it was really hard in the beginning. I wanted to put down the ”big stuff” everyday, such as my wife, my kids, my parents, my siblings and my friends. I felt like I betrayed them if I didn´t mention them, and I guess that was also one of the reasons I quit, since I had the same five every day 😊.
I realized though, that they could not only be the same every day, but also that it is ok to appreciate the small things as well. It was when I started appreciating the daily, small things, I truly found peace. The big ones are always there, and there is no shame in not mentioning them every day. So, don´t get stuck, the tiniest thing could be the key!
I know that some people note their three things in the morning to kickstart the day, and some do it in the evening just before bed time in order to manifest them during sleep. I don´t think there is any golden rule here, it is individual, just like you and me. I am sure you´ll find out what´s best for you. I will do mine in the evening, and here are my first three:
I am grateful for:
- My time freedom
- My family
- My lilac branch
As you can see, todays words of gratitude are a mix of important things like lifestyle and family, but also something small as a lilac branch. The lilac branch for the wonderful smell, the reminder of a long summer ahead, and memories from childhood. Some of the things I am grateful for right now. The lilac is just the trigger for those things beneath. The tool.
I am also thinking of my friends who I spent the past few days with in Prague, and I look forward to putting them on the list tomorrow. See, I already activated my brain to consciously identify what I am grateful for. It works!
Here comes the most important part after writing down the words of gratitude. Read them out loud. Look yourself in the mirror and make sure you manifest the words. Extend the words with specific meanings, why you are grateful and how you achieved them or received them. Attach feelings to them. Just like you need to do when you set a goal.
Gratitude is appreciation for something you already have, and goals are something you want to have in the future. We will talk more about goals in future posts, but essentially you can trick your brain into believing that you already have what you want, leading to getting what you want, if you attach emotions to it.
Doing this with things you already have, gratitude, will train your brain to do the same with things that you want, goals.
So, let´s start transforming your life into the life you want to live.
What are you grateful for today?
All the best,