Making Self Care a Lifestyle: Practice Gratitude
This weekly blog series offers a collection of diverse and effective coping techniques that can reduce stress, improve mental and emotional well-being, and perhaps make you even more effective in achieving your individual goals. Check back every Monday morning for the newest skill of the week.
“Gratitude has shown to be a powerful way to improve your mood and achieve greater wellness. It is easy to forget all of the simple things we can feel grateful for. ~ Kendra Doukas, MS, LMFT
During a gratitude meditation you visualize all the things in your life that you are grateful for. Start with a few deep breaths, noticing your ability to breath in and out, notice your heart beating rhythmically. Notice your body’s unseen systems all functioning without any conscious effort. This can be a good place to start your gratitude meditation.
Notice your ability to breath, hands to touch, eyes to see, legs to walk and run, etc. Acknowledge other things, people, and experiences you are grateful for. Give each focus of gratitude the concentration it deserves. Try taking a few deep breaths for each thing you focus your gratitude on.
A few variations on this exercise: write out gratitude statements in a journal, take a gratitude walk focusing on gratitude for the natural world and your connection to it, write a gratitude letter to someone who has had a powerful impact on your life.
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