Posts

Living In Gratitude: Self-Perception

Self-perception is, simply put, how we view ourselves. This lens through which we view everything influences our mood, behavior, attitude, beliefs, and judgment. Suppose we hold a primarily positive view of ourselves. In that case, this spills over into how we view the world, becoming cyclical as it leads to even more positive behaviors, habits, and ideas.

Self-perception is a core component of our identity. When we achieve something like a degree, promotion, or other accomplishments, our confidence and perception of ourselves are boosted. 

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Living in Gratitude: Younger Podcast

Recently, I was interviewed about the power of gratitude by Dr. Robyn Benson on Younger: The A.R.T. and Science of Youthful Aging podcast. The episode is called “Creating a Life of Joy Through Gratitude.”

I share how my gratitude journey began on a walk with my grandmother.

Since then, gratitude has been a grounding place for me, a way of life that I’ve chosen. Gratitude is available to everyone.

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Living In Gratitude: 30 Habits to Cultivate Happiness

It is an understatement to say that 2020 has been a challenge. We are experiencing unprecedented uncertainty and so much of life feels out of our control.

Yet there are still ways to seek happiness even while we collectively experience the grief, stress, fear, and anxiety this year has wrought.

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Living In Gratitude: Choosing to Live in Ease

There is a difference between living an easy life and living in ease.

Easy means without problems or difficulty. A life devoid of adversity.

Living in ease is striking a balance between effort and the effortless. It is following the rhythmic flow of life. Living in ease is a choice rather than an unrealistic ideal.

We all experience challenging times, periods when we have to stand firm, overcome, work hard, push through. But even during these seasons, we can choose ease.

As humans, we often unconsciously seek out the most arduous path. Our ego thrives off external approval from others. We want to win. We want to be right. We want to impress. And sometimes, we want to avoid. Avoid failure. Avoid being in stillness. Avoid emotions.

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Living In Gratitude: Gratitude Treasure Hunt

There are times – like the ones we are living in now – that stretch us to look for things to appreciate. Each day rolls into the next with uncertainty mounting on what the future holds. That can begin to taint our ability to see that even during dark times, there are always things for which to be grateful.

Below is a twist on the classic scavenger hunt that came from Simple Acres Blog. Instead of simply finding objects pre-hidden by someone else, you will seek out items that have personal significance and each object being something you appreciate.

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Living In Gratitude: Hugs

You can’t wrap love in a box, but you can wrap a person in a hug.

Social distancing. Two words that are now indelible parts of our nomenclature.

Although social separation is very important for all of us to engage in right now for the health of our nation, as social creatures, humans thrive on touch. Our emotional, mental and physical wellbeing is nourished when we connect with others. And hugs are one of the best ways to make us feel connected to someone else.

Studies show that adults and children alike need between three and five hugs a day. And now more than ever, those hugs are vital and mostly virtual.

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Living in Gratitude: Why Did the Coffee Spill?

As we enter into a new year and a new decade, consider this analogy for what lies ahead.

You are holding a cup of coffee when someone bumps into you, causing the coffee to spill.

Why did the coffee spill?

Many of us would respond, “Because someone bumped into me.”

The answer is: Because there was coffee in your cup.

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Living In Gratitude: Be Thankful

Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire,
If you did, what would there be to look forward to?

Be thankful when you don’t know something,
For it gives you the opportunity to learn.

Be thankful for the difficult times.
During those times you grow.

Be thankful for your limitations
Because they give you opportunities for improvement.

Image by Makro_Wayland from Pixabay

Be thankful for each new challenge
Because it will build your strength and character.

Be thankful for your mistakes
They will teach you valuable lessons.

Be thankful when you’re tired and weary
Because it means you’ve made a difference.

It is easy to be thankful for the good things.
A life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are
also thankful for the setbacks.

GRATITUDE can turn a negative into a positive.
Find a way to be thankful for your troubles
and they can become your blessings.

Author Unknown

May your Thanksgiving holiday and each day that follows be filled with gratitude and good things.

Kindness: A True Game Changer

Written by guest blogger, Gowtham Natarajan

As you stroll down the busy hallway at school during lunch with a group of friends, you look over and see a kid eating lunch by himself. But what do you do next?  

Do you keep walking thinking he chose to sit there? 

Go over to him and ask if he has anyone to spend his thirty-minute lunch break with? 

Offer to have him eat with you and your friends? 

This is probably a situation that many of us have encountered at one point or another. The question is, however, what did you do about it?

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Living In Gratitude: Gratitude Literally Alters Our Heart & Brain

An article authored by Arjun Walla shared some interesting scientific information backing what we always knew: gratitude literally impacts us on a molecular level.

According to the article, scientists have discovered that feelings of gratitude can actually change your heart and brain. Feeling gratitude can also be a great tool for overcoming depression and anxiety. Furthermore, scientists have discovered that the heart sends signals to the brain.

There are those people with seemingly very little who are overwhelmed with gratitude for a warm meal, rudimentary shelter, or some used clothing while so many of us who have all so much are always in search of more things to make us happy and fulfilled rather than appreciating what we have.

In a world where emotional intelligence isn’t really taught in school and the importance is put on striving for high grades, it’s no wonder so many people have difficulty feeling grateful. This is especially understandable if you’ve been brought up in the western world, which is full of consumerism and competition, a world where we’re constantly made to feel we are lacking so we need to strive for more.

Says Walla, happiness is a matter of perspective, and in a world where we are constantly made to feel like we are lacking and always ‘wanting’ more, it can be difficult to achieve or experience actual happiness. Many of us are always looking toward external factors to experience joy and happiness when really it’s all related to internal work. This is something science is just starting to grasp as well, as shown by research coming out of UCLA’s Mindfulness Awareness Research Center (MARC).

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