Modern*Simplicity

Creating a Life Free From Chaos

How to Cultivate an Attitude of Gratitude

Let’s face it, it’s easy to fall into a pattern of complaining and misery while forgetting the many moments, people and things we can be appreciative of. Gratitude is an important tool for cultivating more happiness and joy in your daily life. Gratitude can stave off depression, promote wellness, and can keep fear and anxiety at bay. It’s a skill we need to practice regularly — the art of recognizing what we have to be grateful for, acknowledging our gratitude and truly appreciating our blessings.

Cultivating an Attitude of Gratitude

Gratitude can help us put our situations into perspective and help us remember what we have. When we can see the good in a situation, it becomes harder to complain and so much easier to find hope. As part of the preparation for our upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, here are some suggestions for making gratitude part of your daily life.

When we see the good in a situation, it becomes so much easier to find hope. Click To Tweet
  1. Write a thank you note. It doesn’t have to be formal — just a little note or email telling someone you appreciate something they’ve done for you. Let them know their kindness was worth the effort.
  2. Do a Random Act of Kindness for a stranger. Do something nice for someone you don’t know, whether you pay the toll for the person behind you or send an anonymous gift to someone in need. The possibilities are endless.
  3. Surprise someone with a gift. Bring them coffee or offer to run an errand. Think about what that person needs and try to give it to them, whether it’s a hug or a car wash or a night away from the kids.
  4. Genuinely compliment someone every day. Find something about someone every day that you genuinely appreciate and let them know. Even better, make a list of 7 (or more) things of what you love about someone or what they’ve done that you appreciate. Don’t forget to give them the list!
  5. Start a gratitude journal. In a small notebook, keep a running or daily list of things you’re grateful for, whether you appreciate a favor someone did for you or you’re thankful that it rained that day.
  6. Give back. Clear out some items from your home that you don’t need and give them to someone who does. Those old coats you never wear could keep someone less fortunate warm this year. Your child’s outgrown clothes and toys could benefit a child who doesn’t have any. Those endless cans of soup and boxes of rice that are gathering dust in your kitchen could go to the food pantry.
  7. Remember the good times. “Gratitude is the heart’s memory,” says an old French proverb. Another good way to cultivate gratitude is to remember the people in our lives who have shown kindness (both to us and to others) in big and small ways. Simply remembering and appreciating them can help us feel more gratitude for the things we have right now.

How do you cultivate an attitude of gratitude? Leave me a comment with your best tips for promoting gratitude!

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