Gratitude is one of the most powerfully fulfilling emotions in human experience. As the flip side of selfless contribution, gratitude shares all the positive energy of human compassion, Gratitude is not simply a concept – it has measurably strong energetic vibrations that can alter your day to day life experience and long-term outlook.
Moment of pure gratefulness perfect moments. They allow you to experience something greater than yourself — the very act of selfless giving, whether you are the giver or the receiver – is a timeless gift from the deepest, most beautiful core of humanity’s ability to express compassion. When compassion takes shape in someone in your life sharing, caring and showing their empathy for you, sometimes unexpectedly, your gratitude completes the circle of love, bringing you happiness – if you choose to accept it wholeheartedly and give expression to your gratefulness.
Positive psychology research indicates that gratitude brings greater happiness. Gratitude helps you connect with positive emotions, improves your health, inspires you to deal with difficulties and strengthens your relationships. Gratitude build your resilience in troubled times.
What can you do today to increase gratitude and become happier?
Thank someone directly
Make a call, pay a visit or send a card or email to someone who has made an important contribution to your life. Your loved ones and friends stand by you when the going is rough are not doing so because they pity you. Realize that their effort is inspired by their faith in your abilities and strengths. Release unneccesary feelings of shame and self-doubt, and let gratitude do its magic!
Thank someone mentally
Sometimes it’s hard to quickly connect with someone who has helped you. Perhaps it is someone in your past who you’ve lost touch with or has transitioned beyond this life. A powerful distance healing technique inspired by the deep Tibetan practice of Tonglen, provides a wonderful and easy path to happiness,
Choose and hold a teddy bear, stuffed animal, doll, a photograph or some item that represents someone you want to thank.
Sit quietly, going back into your memories to recreate a special loving gesture that really moved you, perhaps from your childhood. Allow your mind and body to feel again the great happiness of that time. Stay there for some time.
As those memories and feelings arise, so will a powerful sense of gratitude. Remembering the person who evoked these feelings in you, let the feeling of being genuinely loved flow to the object in your hands.
This object is now attuned to your gratitude. Let it be your loving-kindness prop from now on. Hold it to increase your gratitude to those close to you, and then to neighbors, coworkers, and friends. Go back to your gratitude object, again and again, to flow positive feelings toward those you don’t know well, people in need and, when you are ready, anyone who has hurt you.
Count your blessings… or rather, make your blessings count
If you already take time to count your blessing – and even if you don’t – follow the advice of spiritual author and teacher, Eknath Easwaran, who proposed that the way to happiness is reducing our needs.
Take a moment to reflect on this. Reducing your needs makes complete sense!
Sot what do you really need to be happy? When you are honest with yourself and really look within, you’ll probably discover that it’s actually less than you are currently striving for.
Much of what you need is already in your hands! Open yourself to gratitude for what you have now.
Which among the things you don’t have are fairly easy to get? Can you manage a hiking day, a gathering of friends, or a few hours to yourself? Be grateful for the choices before you, and give to yourself life’s simple gifts.
Spend time in nature
A mindful retreat into nature is a wonderful way to increase gratitude and happiness. A personal retreat does not have to be a long or complicated endeavor. If the area you live in is close to nature, a day trip will do the trick.
The day you choose is just for you, so plan ahead to expect reduced cell phone connection. Leave your laptop and any other devices at home.
Go slowly and explore, taking in every tree, plant, creek. Stop to look at the sky and breathe.
Make this time just for breathing and being aware of the power of nature around you. If thoughts or worries arise, let them go. All you have to do now is just be and breathe.
Meditation lets you focus on the present moment, where you can focus on small thing that make you feel grateful: the chirping of birds, the blueness of the sky, a wonderful scent. Just sitting peacefully for ten minutes, releasing thoughts and judgments, gives you the time to not just fell gratitude, but to be gratitude.
Waking up Grateful
The yogis teach that the moment you awaken is the most important moment of your day. Just getting out of the bed can be hard if you immediately feel pressure about the day ahead. Here’s a way to use gratitude to wake up to a brand new day feeling refreshed and optimistic.
Stay laying down in bed, and begin to flex. Stretch on arm over to the opposite side as far as it can. Then stretch the other arm to the opposite. Do the same stretch with each leg.
Breathe deeply. Now arch your back, then move into a kneeling position. Drop your body over your folded legs, drop your head down and stretch your arms forward.
Sit at the edge of your bed. Sit straight and tall, with your feet flat on the floor.
Visualize a spectral light entering from above through the crow of your head flowing downward into your body, flowing into every cell.
Now, visualize a warm glow entering from your feet, flowing upward, mingling with the spectral light from above. Keep your focus just below your abdomen, where the two energy sources meet. Remain there for a few minutes; as you start your day sense your gratitude for the earth and air that sustain you. With a few minutes of practice each day you quickly gain gratitude for the gift of life, which is the ultimate source of happiness.