Step 4 We need to start feeling grateful for what we have and stop taking things for granted, Gratitude can unlock our happiness.
During my period of unhappiness I remember, I used to concentrate mostly on things that I wanted and I was completely forgetting what I had. What I had wasn’t so important, I thought it was something I was entitled to have to, basically, I was taking for granted a lot of things.
But then when I discovered during my searches and studies that a lot of people were suggesting to add gratitude in our life, I decided to give it a go, I had nothing to lose but only to gain.
Soon after I started practicing Gratitude I could see the results in my life. I started feeling more content and happy, I realized that, after all, my situation wasn’t so bad, there were a lot of people in a worse situation than mine…
I started to appreciate my life and I was really grateful for it.
I got to the conclusion that it’s not happiness that brings us gratitude, but it’s gratitude that brings us happiness.
But why Gratitude can help us to be happy and live a happy life?
As we saw in the previous step, (Step Three – Happiness is a state of mind) Happiness is a state of mind which we can create with positive emotions and Gratitude is one of them and is very powerful.
It’s very easy to forget what we have mainly because we want more, which could be good, and we tend to take everything for granted like for instance our health and we start realizing only when we don’t feel well.
Again here we have got a choice, to be grateful or not to be grateful for what we have, it’s again our choice. As we saw in step 1 Happiness is a choice, we are in charge of our life and we can decide to live as we want. If we don’t make the decision to be grateful, is like we have made the decision not to be grateful…
I personally practice gratitude in the morning, just after I wake up and in the evening when I go to bed before to have a good night sleep. I don’t do anything special I just say “thank you to still be alive and well”, thank you for all I have in my life and I go mentally through a list of things I am grateful for. It’s important we create that feeling of gratitude and not only to say “thank you”, we need to feel grateful, the feeling of gratitude must be genuine, only so we can feel good.
I also practice Gratitude during the day, for instance if I have to go somewhere and I reach the destination on time, I say thank you.
We are used to complain a lot when things don’t go the way we want, but when things go the way we want, do we spend the same amount of time in being grateful? Probably not, so let’s start practice Gratitude!
I suggest you now stop reading and start thinking deeply of something we feel grateful for and start to create the feeling of gratitude. Once we have created it once, we can easily recall it every time we want.
I have also created my “Gratitude list” where I have listed all the things that I am grateful for. I use my Gratitude List every day, just for few minutes I read all the things I am grateful for and I keep it updated. When I go through my Grateful List, I consider a moment for myself, to empower my positive state of mind, to empower my happiness because happiness comes from within.
If we are in pain, focusing on Gratitude is really helpful, it helps to shift our focus away from the pain and start feeling better.
I suggest you to do the same, writing makes your thinking visible! and when you will start writing, you will be surprised to discover that there are plenty things to be grateful for in your life.
As I mentioned before it’s important we create the feeling of gratitude until our eyes overflow with tears, as the tears come, we will feel the most beautiful feeling around our heart and all through the inside of us.
Simple suggestions to write a “Gratitude List”
Just take a piece of paper and write “I am grateful for …”
If you just can’t think of anything, just wait few minutes, give it time, not rush. I am sure something inside you will shift and the words will start to come out.
1 – Try to be the more specific you can, if you think it helps, you can even make a drawing.
2 – Once you start writing the things you are grateful for, next to them write the reasons why you are grateful.
3 – Not every day will you feel the sense of gratitude but there is no need to worry, it’s quite normal.
What I personally do when I feel like that, I try to create that feeling of Gratitude with a simple procedure: I place my hands on my heart for few minutes, I then raise my head, lift my body up, raise my arms to the sky and I shout loud in my mind a few times: “Thank you!” If you want you can start dancing or singing for few minutes, while you are concentrating on your Gratitude feeling.
4 – I suggest you create a routine, a habit, choose a couple of moments during the day, could be morning and evening like I do, but any moment is fine.
5 – Consult your Gratitude List during the moments you feel down and in pain. Gratitude can certainly lift your spirit.
6 – It’s very common when we start seeing results, we stop doing this practice. It happened to me and it happens to a lot of people. So once you start to see results, don’t stop, keep doing it, remember happiness is a journey. We need to keep our flame of happiness on all the time.
You might also like to read: Things to be grateful for in our life when going through a tough period
So Thank you for reading this!
As I have done for all the previous steps, below I have listed some quotes from famous and successful people about “Happiness and Gratitude”:
“Happiness and gratitude” Quotes
Happiness is itself a kind of gratitude.” Joseph Wood Krutch
Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.” Melody Beattie
“Social scientists have found that the fastest way to feel happiness is to practice gratitude.” Chip Conley
“Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.” Denis Waitley
“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” Gilbert K. Chesterton
“I don’t have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness – it’s right in front of me if I’m paying attention and practicing gratitude.” Brene Brown
“The kind of experience of humility and happiness that comes with gratitude tends to crowd out whatever is coarse, or ugly, or mean.”Kevin DeYoung
More => Gratitude Quotes
How to Be happy in 7 Steps: Step Five – Happiness is in the present moment
- – What is happiness and how to be always happy in life?
- – Step One – Happiness is a choice
- – Step Two – Happiness is an attitude of mind
- – Step Three – Happiness is a state of mind
- – Step Four – Gratitude is the key to Happiness
- – Step Five – Happiness is in the present moment
- – Step Six – Happiness Triggers
- – Step Seven – Understand the reason why we are unhappy