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How to Start a Gratitude Practice and Change Your Life

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https://tinybuddha.com/blog/how-to-start-a-gratitude-practice-to-change-your-life/

tinybuddha.com

How to Start a Gratitude Practice and Change Your Life
"When you realize there is nothing lacking, the whole world belongs to you." -Lao Tzu Somewhere in the distant past, out here in New Zealand, I recall someone saying to me "Be grateful for small mercies." Back in the 1950s, when I was a small girl, that meant being grateful for the simple things that made up the better part of my life.

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Gratitude doesn’t seem to come as easily as grumbling does, and you will likely resist this exercise. Waiting for the resistance to pass is futile. Just do it.

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Begin

Sit down with pen and paper or at your computer and start, “I am grateful for …” 

Your gratitude list is a bridge across those troubled waters to a resting place on t...

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Practice present-moment gratitude

As you move through your day, pause now and then when you remember and think as you do something “I am grateful.”

Moving through your day with awareness and grace in this...

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Share the gratitude

Partner with someone. You will keep each other going and that sense of obligation to that person will give you the push you need to write your list on those days when it just seems too hard...

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The cumulative effect

The individual impact of any one piece of gratitude is small, but the cumulative effect is huge. The power of this habit comes from a multiplier effect that takes hold after practicing it for a month or two. You begin to realize that nearly every day is a good day (at least in a small way).

Gratitude is free

You start to realize how insignificant monetary things are for your day-to-day happiness. The majority of your grateful moments don’t cost a dime: time spent with friends and family, something nice someone said, a good workout that day. 

That’s not to say money is unimportant, but there is something comforting in realizing that the moments you’re actually grateful for each day are free.

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Marcus Tullius Cicero
“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others.”

Marcus Tullius Cicero

What gratitude changes

Gratitude is intended to change three things: your past, your present, your future. 

If you’re not transforming your past, present, and future, then you aren’t fully experiencing the benefits of gratitude.

Live in the gain

Stop focusing on what's missing from your life. And rather than measuring yourself against your ideals, measure yourself against where you were before.

When you live in the gain, all you see is progress. What you focus on expands.

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The journey through suffering

The five stages of grief are described as anger, bargaining, denial, depression, and acceptance. Yet, when a tragedy strike, we already know how bad things are. What is most needed is hope.

Suffering as part of life

We live in an age where many feel that they are entitled to a perfect life. But at some stage, everyone will face a tragedy.

When tough times do come, resilient people seem to recognize that suffering is part of every human life. Understanding this stops you from feeling discriminated against when trouble comes.

Directing your attention

Resilient people typically manage to focus on the things they can change and accept the things they can't.

Don't get swallowed up by your troubles. Don't lose what you still have to what you have lost.

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