You may not make an official New Year resolution this year, but there may be some things that you’d like to have or do. What would you like to start, or stop? How would you like to feel? Do you want to limit critical thoughts and increase positive ones? The good news is, there isn’t a deadline with most of what we want to accomplish, do or have. It is a process and the most important thing is to feel good about each small success we have along the way.
A way to feel good more consistently is to stay in a state of satisfaction with what you have. This will also help to reduce stress levels. A way to feel more satisfaction is to be in a constant state of gratitude. I know, the word is overused, but the feeling of gratitude is powerful beyond measure because it promotes a sense of happiness, joy, well-being and peace about where you are in your life. When we master these states of being is when the true healing of mind and body begins. Isn’t that what you really want this year?
Here are some tips on how to bring gratitude into your life or apply them to any New Year Resolution you decide on.
1. Think It Through
Make sure that incorporating a gratitude practice (or any resolution) is something you really want to do. Follow your own inner guidance – not what an article is telling you to do. Ask why you want to have more thoughts and feelings of gratitude in your life. What are the benefits? What are the drawbacks? What is the change that you expect to experience. Answering these questions will motivate you to follow through with a consistent practice that will become a habit. Then make a simple list to begin with.
2. Make thoughts and feelings of gratitude a habit.
You do most habits without thinking about them, such as brushing your teeth or taking a shower. That’s the key to making gratitude a habit. When an action becomes a habit, it seems effortless. Experts say it takes 21 days to create a new habit. So, start small. Make it a point to take a few moments every morning to be grateful for the day, for a good night’s sleep, for your comfortable bed, for the night time to sleep and any other thoughts that come to mind. Then find other times throughout the day and things to be grateful for. Take the time to acknowledge them and feel the gratitude from your heart.
3. Plan How You Will Deal with Temptations and Distractions.
When creating new habits, we fall prey to temptations and distractions. Make a short list of what you will do when that happens. When you realize you forgot your morning gratitude routine, then decide to take a few moments when you remember that and feel gratitude for remembering that you forgot! 😊 Then perhaps you can feel gratitude for what is happening at that time.
4. Give Yourself the Space and Ease of Being Realistic
Many times, we make a decision that we will do something on a particular schedule and inevitably fall short. This is common when people are trying to lose weight and they vow that they will not eat a certain food. Then when they do eat it, they feel like a failure. Therefore, it’s okay to decide on how often you will want to make a gratitude exercise/meditation part of your life, but don’t beat up on yourself because you don’t feel much gratitude when the kids are pushing all of your buttons! Be easy on yourself.
5. Be Kind to Yourself this Year
Do not beat up on yourself if you are challenged to meet your goals. If you “miss the mark”, take the opportunity to re-evaluate and consider what changes you need to make to be more consistent with your efforts. There may be another way to accomplish the same thing, so be open to modifying your plan.
6. Reward Your Successes
Be happy about each time you fulfill the steps of your plan. Rewards don’t have to be extravagant, time consuming or costly. A reward may be a quiet time with a cup of tea, taking a short walk in nature, watching a funny video, snuggling with your family, or calling a friend. These are all things that you can also be grateful for.
7. Have Faith in Yourself
Many people don’t make a New Year resolution because they don’t believe they can stick with it. But the fact is, many people do keep their resolutions and are happier and healthier as a result. There is no reason why you can’t be one of those people! A way to reinforce faith in yourself is to make a list of all the things you have accomplished and feel grateful for them.
It’s okay to start small because even snippets of time when you remember to be grateful throughout the day add up. The more you feel grateful for the everyday things like food, water, the sun, your vehicle, your home and your body, the more things you will feel grateful for. The habit will become second nature – and you’ll be grateful for that. You could even be grateful for this article!
Whatever you decide, may your New Year be blessed with happiness, peace and prosperity.
Would you like some help to make sure that you stay focused on your goals and overcome obstacles that stall your progress? Schedule a free, no obligation phone consultation here.