Cultivating An Attitude of Gratitude

Cultivating an attitude of gratitude is essential if we wish to experience more happiness, love, joy and abundance in our lives.

Learning to be more grateful is one of the master keys to enjoying more happiness, to unlocking the wonder and magic in our lives. Gratitude transforms an existence into a life.

There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is  - Albert Einstein

When I was about seven years old, my mother took me shopping one day. I remember thinking about how we are on a giant rock hurtling at incredible speed through space. I was astonished that I seemed to be the only one in the crowded street who was aware of this. Otherwise they wouldn't just be shopping, would they? They would all be standing around with their mouths open in awe!

We are surrounded in every moment by wonder but tend to be too caught up in our little lives to notice the big LIFE behind it all. An attitude of gratitude and appreciation flows naturally from a space of wonder.

How To Cultivate An Attitude Of Gratitude

Through becoming aware of our habitual thoughts and making new choices.

An excellent start is to simply notice the tendency to complain, criticise, judge, moan etc. and to notice how it makes you feel ...contracted, heavy, powerless. Both lack and abundance exist simultaneously in our lives.

In every moment we can consciously choose whether to focus on what is missing in our present experience or to be thankful for the gifts that we already have. It is like tending a garden ...we can water the weeds or the flowers. The type of garden we wish to create is our own choice.

Some helpful tips for cultivating an attitude of gratitude

•  Write a letter to a person in your life who you have never properly thanked. Deliver it in person. Read it out loud. Bring tissues.

•  Keep a gratitude journal. Take some time each day to write down things to be thankful for. Carry it with you and add to it as you go about your day. Read it last thing at night and first thing in the morning.

•  If the habit of complaining is deep (as it was for me) it is easy to forget your intention to develop an attitude of gratitude. Put post-its around the house. Tell your family and friends about your intention to be more grateful and ask them to remind you if you forget.

•  Avoid newspapers, negative people, gossip etc. whenever possible. Read uplifting books, spend more time in nature, surround yourself with spiritually minded people.


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The Bigger Picture

At first, practising gratitude can largely be a mental exercise but nonetheless,  it is infinitely more fulfilling than complaining.

As our practice evolves, gratitude begins to happen naturally by itself and emanates from the heart rather than the mind. The highest state of gratitude can be described as 'praying without ceasing' – living in a perpetual state of awe and wonder, like a child.

Everything in creation is made of the same basic material vibrating at different frequencies. When our vibration is high we feel "good' when it is low we feel "bad". The higher our vibration, the more in alignment we are with the Source of the limitless supply of all things.

In this state, our desires manifest spontaneously and effortlessly as we become powerful magnets for attracting a continuous flow of good into our lives.

This is the meaning of "seek first the kingdom of God and all things shall be added unto you." In other words, make happiness your first priority and everything else will take care of itself.

In our daily lives, we must see that it is not happiness that makes us grateful, but the gratefulness that makes us happy. --Albert Clarke

I recommend this excellent article from the New York Times on the benefits of gratitude:

the benefits of gratitude


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