by Jonathan Hilton

gratitude 1I have often considered that being truly grateful is an important step into bringing more of what you want in your life into your life.  Each and every day I am more and more convinced this is true.  I had often talked a good game about being grateful, really taking a moment and appreciating the things in my life, but my process was off.

What I used to do for Gratitude

I would take a moment and be thankful for things in my life, people who I came across, and things that happened to me. I think this might be OK for others but my problem was that it was inconsistent and might not recall something I was really thankful for.  I also spent inconsistent amounts of time thinking of the blessings in my life.  I would try thinking of them on the way to work, but I am easily distracted and one thing would drive out another. I was inconsistent, and sloppy with my gratitude and I was meeting a lot of blocks in my life.

My New Process of Gratefulness

gratitude 2It does not take a brain surgeon to figure out what to do differently. I was inconsistent so I needed to be more consistent.  To build that consistency and to make the topics of my gratitude consistent I had to take a moment each day to write it down.

I always try to have my notebook with me, so when I have a moment each morning I jot down my list of things I am grateful for. I would suggest this for everyone for this reason. Even though it seems a simple thing, there  is a moment of contemplation that happens when you actually write it down.  The thought has to travel from your mind through your arm to your hand and onto the paper.  My lists are not all that elaborate, because I am pretty grateful for the little things in life.

I am grateful for good cups of coffee, good conversation, something interesting I read on a blog, a book I read, having money in the bank, a text from a friend that made my day, or a long verbose Facebook message which was awesome to read. The list gets a bit long, but I have tried to keep it to what comes to mind.  I can always look back to see what I wrote before.

The Blocks are Disappearing

It may just be coincidence and those who are negative will say that is all it is, yet I do not believe in that. After a very short time, I mean a matter of days,  blocks I was having in life were melting away.  I could give specific examples but they will only mean something to me.  Making a gratitude list for me has become something real and powerful.  I know how it sounds but I can feel the difference.

Being grateful is the key to accepting more things into your life. Whatever it is.  If you are lonely, look for the times when you don’t feel too lonely during the day and be thankful for those.  If you are poor, be grateful for the things you do have, if you are not feeling well, find the moments you don’t feel as bad and be grateful for them.  If you are particularly down, find the little things around you all the time, the weather, a smile from a stranger, flowers, an unexpected fortunate turning. Whatever you come in contact with, be grateful for it.  A momentary contemplation of thanks is all it takes.

The worst thing that will happen is you will feel better about life. The best thing that will happen is that you will open yourself up to more of the same kind of experiences.  It doesn’t really matter if you believe what I am telling you or not.  Just contemplate what will happen if you do nothing different? Nothing different will happen. If you are lonely,sick, poor, or just generally unhappy, what the heck do you have to lose? Give it an honest attempt and see what it does in your life.

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