By Rei Shen
Many of us take our lives for granted. We spend time agonizing over failures and lose confidence in ourselves. But adding a tinge of gratitude can make us happier people. When you proactively reflect on life from a place of gratitude, you start seeing the world in a different light. You realize that gratitude and appreciation can help you deal with negative thoughts, relieve stress, and embrace joy in your life.
Here are five simple tips to cultivate gratitude and invite more happiness daily.
1. Be Careful of Comparisons
Everyone experiences envy at some point. Maybe your colleague got a pay raise you felt you deserved more, has a Mercedes Benz you wished you owned, or has a handsome appearance you always desired.
It’s way too easy to be consumed in jealousy and wish you lived in someone else’s shoes. So you end up feeling inferior even though there are plenty of great qualities about yourself.
If this sounds familiar, you must avoid comparing yourself with others. Add a bit of gratitude into your daily life; after all, it doesn’t cost you anything. It wouldn’t bring your world crashing down if you just reminded yourself that you have strong points too.
If your friend is dedicated to working out every day, don’t think, “I wish I were as hardworking as him.” Keep pride on areas where you excel, like “I’m happy I exercised twice this week.” Everyone is progressing on this journey, some slower and faster than others are, but we will eventually reach the finish line.
So kick away envy when it comes to light and appreciate your strengths. Turn appreciation into a habit, and soon, you will have fewer instances of jealousy.
2. Keep a Gratitude Journal
Keeping a gratitude journal is a fantastic way to cultivate gratitude. If you’ve been looking at life as half-empty, it’s important to reframe your mindset for positivity.
Start jotting down things you are grateful for in life. It can be anything, big or small. Don’t be shy to express gratitude for the internet, clean water, and having a roof above your head. If possible, you should do this daily because this routine can help make you more appreciative. You look at the brighter side and see that it’s hard to be angry when you are blessed with all kinds of fortune.
And if you feel it’s tedious writing in a journal, you can always use your phone to record your voice. You can use a phone app feature to translate voice into text. Regardless of your approach, make sure you’re comfortable and do not make this routine feel time-consuming. You want to wake up in the morning eager to ease into a state of gratitude.
3. Accept Hardship
The reality of life is that difficulties and unexpected events happen to everyone. We all want to live the best we can, so we seethe every time we have an unlucky day.
Instead of being irritated, it’s better to come to terms with life’s hardships. Don’t let failures stop you from realizing how great life is. Building resistance against setbacks will give you the strength to gain key lessons from experiences. You can rest easy knowing some things in life are inevitable.
When you finally accept that life is full of ups and downs, you recognize how important it is to stay in the moment and live every day as if it’s your last. You go from thinking, “I wish I had a Ferrari” to “I’m glad I have a car to drive.” It’s a simple reminder to appreciate all that life has to offer.
4. Get in Touch With Nature
Going for a walk in nature can help you feel calm and relaxed. You can start by taking a stroll around your local park or appreciating your backyard garden.
Absorbing yourself in nature is a perfect way to escape the busyness of life and unending phone notifications. When trying to cultivate gratitude, outdoor scenery gives you an environment to reflect on your thoughts and experiences.
Don’t view the walk as just getting from point A to point B, but do it for your well-being.
As you spend more time connecting with the world around you and appreciating the beauty of nature, you can reduce anxiety and gratitude comes more naturally.
5. Use Mantras Consistently
Mantras (or affirmations) are short words or phrases used repeatedly to keep your mind focused on the present. They can set you up for positivity and appreciation.
Mantras can pull back wandering thoughts and control your thinking to feel more grateful. Here are a few examples:
- I’m here to learn, grow, and change lives.
- I will walk my own path in life and do so with pure joy.
- Today is a good day and tomorrow will be better.
- I’m confident I will be successful one day.
It’s key to repeat your chosen phrase. Soon enough, you will see a drastic improvement in all parts of your life—career, relationships, and even personal life.
So start focusing on using mantras proactively. You’ll start your day on the right foot and give yourself a dose of positive energy.
Gratitude is what keeps us moving in times of difficulties. Staying in the moment and appreciating everything we have can push us to the finish line.
Don’t naively assume gratitude is a fluffy concept because it can positively impact health, mental well-being, and motivation.
Gratitude is the root of happiness, and a feeling of fullness and contentment will swell up within you by being more grateful. There is no better way to bring color to your life than to cultivate gratitude.
About the Author
Rei Shen is the founder of Success in Depth, a self-improvement website providing tips for leading a successful life. Rei is an entrepreneur, real estate investor, and tea-loving enthusiast. He enjoys reading books and spending time with his family. You can find out more about his work at successindepth.com. You can reach out to him at [email protected]