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3 Easy ways to practice gratitude daily

Growing up, I was taught by my beautiful parents to always be polite and have good manners. I wasn’t given anything I wanted or taken anywhere without those ‘magic’ words: Please and Thank-you. This is where I learnt to always appreciate other people, to show gratitude,​to be thankful for the little things in life and to serve others to make them smile too.
Gratitude. Noun. The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

About a year ago, I realised that I had let this practice slip. I was super ‘busy’ (or so I thought) and my mind was being taken over by my inner-critic. This allowed negativity to creep in. I was starting to dwell on the fact I didn’t have enough money, didn’t look good enough in those tight pants, didn’t feel my business was ever going to be successful. I was constantly focusing on what I didn’t have, rather than appreciating all that I do have…like a beautiful home, a healthy body and a loving husband.

Since starting a new daily practice, I have noticed all the love and joy I already have in my life. It has helped me to become a calmer person with more patience, I feel less stressed and have a positive mind-set (even when it feels as though the world is going to chew me up and spit me out in pieces).
​This daily practice has allowed more happiness and love to flow into my life, without even really trying.

We, as humans, love to be thanked, acknowledged and appreciated. Gratitude is such a simple act that can brighten anyones day and the bonus of expressing kindness can, in turn, make you even happier. Most of us live busy lives and seem to forget about the simple pleasures, the small things that are naturally beautiful and should be appreciated everyday. Whether it’s admiring how blue the sky is, sitting and feeling the cool breeze on your skin or spending time with a loved-one, wait for it… without technology!

Gratitude allows us to live in the present moment, to notice the beauty in everything. There is always something to be grateful for and expressing this appreciation daily will change your perspective of the world, for the better. 
Ask yourself… How often do you take the time to celebrate all the magic in this world?
​ How do you reflect on your day, taking note of what made you smile?

I have 2 daily rituals in my gratitude practice. I write in a gratitude journal at the end of everyday, to reflect on all the positives and wonderful moments I experienced. My second practice is saying everything I am thankful for, at the end of my meditation.
​This allows me to really feel everything and everyone I am grateful for.

Follow these steps to cultivate an easy gratitude practice:

Step 1: Make it a daily ritual.
It takes 21 days to form a habit, so make a conscious effort to stick to your routine. Choose a time within your day, to perform your gratitude practice. Write this is your diary, stick post-it notes to your fridge, or set an alarm in your phone to remind you. It can be first thing in the morning (which is a great way to start your day with a full heart), in the shower, on your way to work, before having lunch, after your meditation… the choice is endless and totally up to you.

Step 2: Get a Gratitude-Buddy
Whether it be a good friend, your partner, your child… Having someone who is going to count on you to express your daily gratitude, will help you commit to the practice. This can be through texting, a phone call, or simply talking. Share with each other 3 things that light you up. It will also allow you to connect and form a deeper relationship with this special person.

Step 3: Write it down
The act of putting pen to paper, or typing in your notes app on your phone, is definitely better than just rattling them off in your head. It makes you think and really feel the reasons why you are grateful for them. Write down 3 things each day, at your designated time, and watch how happiness and love will flow effortlessly into your life.

What am I grateful for today? 
My loving Husband & Family (including my dream in-laws)
Mother Nature and all her natural beauty 
For clean water & a roof over my head

The absolute beauty of a daily gratitude practice is becoming more aware of the positives already in your life. We all seem to focus on the future and think that we will be happiest when we have the big house, the perfect partner, the best car, clearer skin. We don’t realise what we already have and appreciate those things that could be lighting up our lives.

Gratitude allows us to live in the present moment and see the beauty, kindness, and love in this magical world.
​We are only here on Earth for a short time, so why focus on the negatives?

Give it a try and see how it makes you feel… 
You can thank me later.

Nikki. X.