Today is November 1…it’s 50 degrees in Charlotte, the leaves are rapidly falling from the trees, the time changes tonight bringing shorter days and Thanksgiving is just 25 days away. It always seems that the arrival of November and shorter days signals the start of the holiday season and grounding down for the cold months ahead.
I teach two yoga classes on Saturday mornings and my message to both of my classes was a challenge to start a gratitude practice this month. Gratitude is something I speak of often both on my blog and in my daily life. And it’s not a term I use lightly. It’s so easy to say “oh I’m so grateful” in a broad sweep but gratitude is actually something that I practice.
Brene Brown discovered in her research that joy and gratitude are closely entwined and that gratitude is an integral piece to experiencing joy.
This isn’t just an “attitude of gratitude” thing but an actual practice of gratitude. That might be keeping a daily gratitude journal, beginning and ending each day by reflecting on the things you are grateful for and saying a prayer of thanks or going around the dinner table each night with your family and sharing something you’re grateful for.
Your gratitude list might include things as simple as, “I’m grateful for fall scented candles that make my house smell nice and feel cozy,” to more serious matters like, “I’m grateful for my home and for the ability to pay the rent/mortgage every month.” You might think of one thing per day or list 10 things each day.
It might feel a little forced at first but once you begin to truly practice gratitude you begin to see how much abundance there is in your life and how much you have to be joyful about.
Over the last few years it seems that “gratitude challenges” where people post things they are grateful for each day in November have become popular on Facebook. But I challenge you to start a PERSONAL gratitude practice that you feel deep down inside and I challenge you to share it with those who are closest to you…friends, family, children, loved ones. It shouldn’t be something you do to participate in yet another social media challenge but something you do to make a change in your life so that this becomes a new way of being.
Wishing all of you abundant love, joy and gratitude! <3