What is Gratitude?
Gratitude in Difficult Times
Building a Gratitude Practice
1. Write about it.
Putting your thoughts on paper makes them real. It is also an opportunity to go back and review what you are grateful for. My journal sits on my nightstand, so it is easy for me to grab and write in each morning.
2. Compose a note, text, or email.
You can express your gratitude for something kind that someone has done for you. Or it can be an opportunity to reach out and tell someone you are thinking about them. I frequently get phone calls about the messages I send. They tell me my note made their day. If they only knew how much it helped me!
3. Make it a habit.
Set time aside each day to write your gratitude thoughts. I do it every morning. It sets the tone for the rest of the day.
4. Gratitude can be about anything.
Include people, places, and things. Take note of your sense of smell and hearing. Being outdoors gives me the opportunity to be grateful for crickets chirping, the sun on my face and fresh air.
5. Include other people in your gratitude practice.
I actually got this idea from a friend. She had a girl’s night and invited each of us to write what were grateful for on a slip of paper. We then added them to her gratitude jar. I started this practice in the holidays. Friends and family enjoyed being a part of this tradition. I am grateful for the jar because inside there are gratitude notes from my son.
Examples of Gratitude
I want to offer you a few examples to get you started.
- “We tend to forget that happiness doesn’t come as a result of getting something we don’t have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.” —Friedrich Koenig
- Thank God that he gives us victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:57
- I am grateful for this food.
- “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.” —Oprah Winfrey
- I am grateful for my friends and family.
- Let me shout God’s name with a praising song, let me tell his greatness in a prayer of thanks. Psalm 69:30
- I am grateful for my cat and dog.
- “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words but to live by them.” —John F. Kennedy.
- In everything give thanks, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
- I am grateful to those who read Thursday Thoughts and share them so that others are helped.