Simple Ways To Practice Gratitude For A Happier Life

"Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things."

                                                                                                ~ Robert Brault


My favorite holiday is just around the corner... Thanksgiving, a special feast honoring the harvest and blessings of the year.  The first Thanksgiving was celebrated between two cultures, Plymouth colonists and Wampanoag Indians, after the colonist's first successful harvest in the New World in October 1621.  Thanksgiving is a feast dedicated to gratitude - for food, for supportive friends, and for survival.

Why Be Grateful?

According to The Journal of Happiness (2012) found that those who wrote letters of gratitude over a three-week period were happier, had greater life satisfaction, and had less incidence of depressive symptoms.¹  For me, taking a moment every day to be grateful reminds me of how blessed I really am.  Being grateful also prevents me from taking things or people for granted.  It grounds me and gives me a positive perspective on my life.

Two Simple Ways To Encourage Gratitude

1. Start A Gratitude Journal

One way to encourage gratitude is to jot down what you are grateful for every day in the top section of your Ignited Life Planner.

Things I'm Grateful For...


2. Create A Gratitude Jar

Another way to encourage gratitude, particularly with children, is to create a "Gratitude Jar".  Get an empty jar, (or recycle one!) wash it out and add a label.  Then every day write down one thing you are grateful for and drop it in the jar.

Gratitude Jar

At the end of the year, or when you find yourself sad or needing a boost of encouragement, look back through your Ignited Life Planner or take a look at some of the notes in the jar.  (It's especially fun when you have your children participate and read their handwritten notes!) And you will realize the those little things you are so grateful for, are really the big things that give your life meaning, joy and purpose.

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