She’s such a delightful soul and I’m so glad I connected with Cat Graham of Cattitude and Gratitude on a Facebook group for bloggers. Cat lives in rural Ottawa, Canada with her husband, two sons, two cats and two dogs! She’s very creative – sings in a choir, plays the flute, designs posters and calendars and decorates cakes…..I love that every Monday, Cat has a gratitude reminder on her Facebook profile. More recently, she’s started a Facebook page called Positive Thoughts and Gratitude. I love Cat’s attitude, humour and fun style of writing and am so happy to have her writing here today.
Practicing Gratitude Take Practice is part of the Living Gratitude Series
It is in November that negativity sneaks into my conscious and tries to take hold like a nasty virus. This is the time that practicing gratitude is more important than ever. Pushing aside that negative chatter takes work but it’s well worth the effort. If I take the time to practice daily gratitude, all that negativity washes away and the world looks rosy and full of possibility once again.
But how does someone practice gratitude? It’s not enough to just feel it. As J.F. Kennedy wisely said, we must live it and show it in our words and actions.
Here are some ways I practice gratitude.
- I start each day by reading positive quotes, inspirational blog posts and uplifting Facebook pages to start the day off right. They always make me feel grateful and positive.
- I like to create my own inspirational posters with favourite quotes and my own photos. I have my own Facebook page to share these posters.
- I just made a calendar at Lulu of some of my favourite inspirational posters to help us be inspired all year long. Do check it out here.
- Being isolated can often be a bad thing as you lose perspective and the inner critic drops by for a visit and doesn’t leave. Talking to non-judgmental good friends can be so helpful in restoring that feeling of gratitude. Aren’t we lucky to live in the Internet age where connecting with friends is easier than ever? I am so grateful to my online friends who are always there to lift me up on dark days.
- Getting in touch with your passions and taking time for yourself helps in feeling gratitude. If you don’t nurture yourself, you can easily feel resentful, overwhelmed and start to feel sorry for yourself.
- Get up and move. Go out for a walk. Just the change of scenery and the exercise will help you feel better and more open to gratitude. I love being able to walk our dogs in the forest and see nature up close. Putting up a bird feeder and watching birds also helps me feel gratitude.
- Taking action in some way to make the world a better place is a wonderful way to practice gratitude. It doesn’t have to be huge. Even offering praise to a clerk or a waitress will make their day and make you feel good, too. Surprise someone you haven’t talked to for a while with a phone call or email and tell them how much you appreciate them, or better yet, send a note by snail mail. Getting a letter in the mail is so special these days and the person will be able to feel your gratitude every time they look at it.
If we look hard enough, there are always moments in the day where we can practice gratitude.
Lastly I will leave you with this poem I wrote about gratitude a while back.
Grateful or grumpy, it’s always your choice
Are you mad at the world or do you want to rejoice?
It all comes down to your thoughts and attitude
Are you full of anger or full of gratitude?
You see the world in your own unique way
Your thoughts and attitude determine your day,
Grateful or grumpy, it’s up to you
What would you prefer to do?