You just don’t know how lucky you are, until you complete a gratitude ritual.
I have been using the power of gratitude for years, to focus my mind on what I want and to find balance in difficult situations. Up until 2015 I had been using it on and off, but it was never something I was dedicated to.
In 2016 I decided to explore gratitude in depth. It was a year where I was rejected by women I had feelings for, and where I was sick for 3 months of the year. I was sick for 2 months and then not long after I was sick for another month.
Every night for 365 days I wrote down what I was grateful for. This got me through one of the hardest years of my life and it changed my life forever!
My gratitude ritual involved writing down what I was truly grateful for, on every one of those 365 days. I learnt through dedicating time to my grateful ritual, that love was always present and there is some magic in every day.
* A gratitude ritual is not complete unless you feel an opening of the heart or a tear in the eye. It is not an intellectual process, it is a feeling process.
At different times over the 365 days I focused specifically on parts of my life I felt needed perspective. I dedicated a week of gratitude to the following areas.
- My physical body (from head to toe finding gratitude for ALL of my body)
- My friendships (I also called them and expressed gratitude to them verbally)
- My business and clients
- The people I perceived hurt me
- The natural world
At one point in the year while driving, I thought about every person of influence that has been in my life to date. I recalled from birth to the present around 150 people and realised every person had contributed to my life. I cried and felt like I have never, ever been alone.
Stress, frustrations and resentments are letting us know there are people and things we aren’t appreciating in life. By finding gratitude in things that hurt us, we become free and find out there is always good.
Creating Your Own Gratitude Ritual
Each evening before sleep, write down 5 things you are truly grateful for in a small notebook. Everything is fair game to write about: Small & big things, your relationship, health, family, friendships, experiences, feelings, your work, spirituality and yourself.
- Buy a notepad and keep it at your bed side table.
- Write at least 5 things you are grateful for.
- Make sure you really feel the gratitude (if not, keep writing).
- Sit in that space of gratitude for a few minutes and breathe deeply.
- If you miss a day, fill it in the next morning.
When you go to sleep each evening now you will have a full heart. Decide how long you would like to commit to your new gratitude ritual. Will it be 30 days, or 365 days? It’s the consistency that makes gratitude work. Stick with it.
Jeremy Walker is a hypnotherapist and the owner of Inspire Hypnotherapy in Brisbane. Jeremy’s mission is to help people live addiction-free, depression-free and anxiety free. To book a free introductory session call 0448284724.