Welcome to this week’s Mindful Monday!
Another Monday means another post dedicated to the importance of mindfulness. This week, I have decided that the focus for mindfulness shouldn’t be about a specific task that you do every day, because this isn’t necessarily the only one time that you should try to be mindful each day. You can practice mindfulness whenever you wish to, and focusing on your gratitude can be one way to do this.
Today, the focus is going to be on gratitude.
Gratitude. So many of us have so many different reasons to be grateful for something in our lives. This can range between small acts of appreciation, like for example when somebody holds open a door for you, up to the larger things, for instance, somebody helping you out by lending you some money. Sometimes, we are only grateful for the larger things in life, the things that have a direct impact on ourselves. So often we forget that there are actually hundreds, if not thousands, of things that we could be grateful for on any given day.
As well as this, people are often under the illusion that we should only be grateful when somebody has been kind to us, or done us a favour. However, this is a misconception. Being mindful through gratitude means that we are able to be more thankful for the smaller things in life, those that people often forget. Mindfulness is all about living in the present. So, thinking of it this way, in any given moment, if we were to be completely present and focusing only on what we were doing, feeling and saying in that moment, I can guarantee that we would be more appreciative of the world around us and all of the people in it.
By choosing to be more grateful each day, and exercising this for the rest of the week, you would be surprised about the effect it would have on your wellness, overall mood, and quality of life. Often, many of us aren’t as grateful as we could, and perhaps should, be. It’s easy to accept somebody’s kindness, or accept life around you without really stopping to think about how great it is that you have these people in your life, and that you have the opportunity to live life as you know it. Acceptance in this form is a commodity that we all take for granted, and exercising this gratitude is something that we all fall short with in our everyday lives. This week, I ask you to focus on what it is that you are personally thanful for. Your list can be generic, or it can include very personal thoughts, how you choose to approach this is entirely up to you – it is your life, I am only here to help to guide you. So, be creative. Be thoughtful. Be mindful.
Personally, I choose to keep a gratitude journal. Each day, I try to write down all of the things that I have been grateful for that given day. Admittedly, I don’t religiously do this every day, but I try to do it often enough so that it helps me to be more appreciative of everything around me. My list includes my mindfulness gratitude, which are the things that are often forgotten about. This is the key part of this exercise – seeing the good in everything, and living in the present moment. Below I have included a selection of things from my personal gratitude list for a bit of inspiration for you, to get you started. You might find that you are also grateful for these things, but please try to be more personal with it too.
Things I’m grateful for:
- That it stopped raining just in time for me to leave the house
- For my car to take me places further than walking distance
- For having my grandparents in my life
- For the ability to read
- That coffee exists
- For having a door held open for me
- For the kindness and generosity of strangers
- For country roads
- That my family is so supportive and caring
- That I have the opportunity to earn money online
- That I have my health
- That I live in the countryside, and can walk through fields from my doorstep
- For not being allergic to dogs
- For having the ability to study a law degree
Taking the time to notice every individual factor of the smaller things in life, and feeling gratitude towards them, can allow you to feel completely present and in the moment. This can have a huge impact on your day, and if you continue to journal your gratitude, your week, your month, and your year. You can feel grounded and at peace with yourself, and be prepared for whatever life decides to throw at you. Even if it throws you some bad luck, there will always be something about it to be grateful for.
I would love to hear your thoughts on whether this task of being mindful worked for you, and the types of thoughts that you had whilst being appreciative of the world around you!