I have challenged myself to become a woman of gratitude.
I want to train myself to see the beauty all around me. To see GOD all around me.
I want to take notice of the things I so often miss – from the warmth of the sunshine on my skin as the sun rises in the east to the mess in the living room as a sign of an imaginative child experiencing creativity and joy to even the blessed changes that occur in people going through struggles and grief.
Joy is there.
Abundance is there.
God is there.
And a grateful heart can see this- find love and strength in this.
I WANT THIS.
I want it to be a part of me- of who I am.
I want to find it easy like breathing.
I’d love for YOU to join me.
My purpose in sharing this on the blog is twofold:
1.) I want accountability. I want to put this out there for others to HELP ME – mold me, please? I want the accountability to share what I’m noticing to increase the chances of the change I’m craving to really happen. And what better way to obtain accountability but to check in here under my public eye of family, friends and beloved blog followers than to ask you to join in and keep me on my toes?
2.) I want you to find this joy too! Gratitude can give such a different- and better- perspective of everything around us It brings joy to our broken hearts and souls. I want to give YOU the opportunity to feel that too. What’s more- we are then helping one another! If you participate in the challenge – YOU will reap the benefits. If you share here, OTHERS will reap too! Sometimes, sharing with others what WE are grateful for will remind them of their own joys and blessings in life that are often overlooked.
HERE IS MY CHALLENGE TO YOU:
- Get some paper. It can be a few sheets of scrap paper, an old unused (or partially used) notebook, a pretty fancy notebook (which can sometimes add to the motivation), or whatever you have or speaks to you.
- Keep it in a handy spot with a pencil or pen.
- Write on it!!! Give yourself a goal- I suggest no less than 3- I’m personally going to strive for 5, but I’ll refer to the number 3 in my directions. Write down 3 things each day you are grateful for. 3 things you see or observe around you that are a blessing to you or bring a smile to your face. You can do this all at once, first thing in the morning or last thing in the evening or anytime that suits you, OR take that paper and pencil with you and write things down as they strike you (pull over if you’re driving!).
Sometimes, you’ll be tempted to just keep writing. Do it! Just be sure to still obtain your goal daily, as it’s important in order to become a person with deep gratitude in your heart – to change your perspective- to practice this each and every day. This routine will CHANGE you. Try it, you’ll see!
- In addition to writing your list, USE IT. Use it not only as a place to write more examples of the blessings that surround us, but to reflect on in times of need. If you are having a moment of anxiety, use your list to read over and remind yourself of all the blessings you have. Give this list a chance to bring peace to your soul.
In the book, One Thousand Gifts- a guide to giving thanks and finding joy in all aspects of life- Ann Voskamp was challenged to write a list of 1,000 gifts- blessings she had in her life so as to take better notice of everyday graces. She found she could not stop after reaching 1,000 and found, even before reaching her goal, that she was changed in the process. She kept seeing more and adding more. I challenge you to also exceed that challenge. Don’t put a final number to this challenge. Just keep adding!
Each week, I will post a reflection post on gratitude and share 3-5 things from my own list over the week. For I believe in sharing from our own gratitude lists, not only do we gain accountability, but it will help others in finding a perspective of gratitude. So I ask you to follow suit. Share the everyday graces and moments of gratitude you find to motivate others to see the blessings around themselves. Strengthening our ability to see these blessings can change us as individuals and through that, it IS possible to CHANGE THE WORLD. But we must start by changing ourselves. Start looking for joy daily and become a man or woman of gratitude. Join me in this change!
So to get things started: 5 Things from my gratitude journal
1.) Eggs- beautiful delicious eggs….. not just that they give sustenance created by God, but the love of the man who made them for me this morning!
2.) Bad dreams are not real.
3.) Presanctified Liturgies…. nourishment for soul, body and mind.
4.) Rays of sunshine upon my face.
5.) Rain….washing away the muck.