While we are all getting excited about the upcoming year ahead, it’s important to think about gratitude.
Gratitude is one of the most important elements for success. It’s the key to experiencing life at its best.
Many will tell you that hard work and dedication produce success. However, being grateful for your blessings in life is arguably what opens the door to a life of success and prosperity.
Gratitude is a powerful practice that can revolutionize your life forever! Here’s why.
The Importance Of Gratitude
1. Gratitude flows from a heart of “thanksgiving.”
Thanksgiving is not just a date on the calendar. Thanksgiving is a daily discipline that we should all develop in our lives.
Years ago, I made a conscious decision to write down three to five things that I am grateful for every single night. I have done this for almost twenty years, and it changed my life.
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I found myself being thankful for the beautiful trees and moments of silence—for adversity and even painful experiences.
This exercise in gratitude empowered me to be thankful in all circumstances. It shifted my outlook about life and opened me up to a level of living that I did not even know was possible.
2. Gratitude shifts the narrative of your life.
So many people in the world today are battling through toxic thoughts and negative words. These thoughts and words create negative cycles in your lifes.
Being grateful changes the sequencing of words and the processing of your thoughts. It seasons your words and focuses your thoughts creating new possibilities for your life.
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Your story changes, and therefore, the seasons of your life change. You are able to have the right perspective and understand the value that each cycle of life brings. You go from a life of complaining to a life of compassion and appreciation. Changing your story empowers you to create success in every area of your life.
3. Gratitude changes us for the better.
Humanity is in a constant state of evolution. We are all on a journey to become the highest expression of ourselves.
As a soul coach, I know that becoming your best self begins with cultivating a lifestyle of gratitude.
The moment I made gratitude a daily practice in my life, I noticed remarkable changes. I noticed that my heart was more open, and I found myself being more compassionate in life. I was unshaken when things did not go according to plan. Most of all, I was able to process my experiences differently and find the good in everything.
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Gratitude is an advanced practice, but it yields abundant possibilities. The more grateful you are, the more authentic you become. Gratitude will change you into a peaceful, conscious, and sacrificial person. You will be able to be present, and you will be able to live in the flow of life.
4. Gratitude produces a more meaningful life.
When it comes to life meaning, nothing compares to living a life of gratitude. When you are truly grateful, you find yourself living with greater purpose and passion.
Being grateful will give you meaning because it allows you to capture the full essence of every moment. It takes the burden out of life while adding a dimension of beauty, and it allows you to find contentment even in moments of crisis.
Being grateful is developing a mindset that nothing has the ability to compromise your contentment. Contentment will create the conditions that you desire to see in your life. Cultivating a lifestyle of gratitude will be the best decision you ever make.
Jamelle Sanders is the CEO of Jamelle Sanders International and is committed to empowering entrepreneurs and leaders to live up to their true potential and to profit wildly in their businesses. Jamelle is a life coach, author, leading empowerment specialist and highly respected thought leader. Jamelle has successfully empowered leaders and entrepreneurs around the world to succeed in business and in life.
Photo by beth~yellowhousedays
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I'm grateful, God, for so many things. Now, I know I'm not the most grateful person you know, God, so let me take some time to tell you what I'm thankful for.
I'm grateful, God, for the gift of life. Without you I wouldn't be here. Without you nothing would be here. Without you nothing would be at all.
I'm grateful for my parents, God. Even if they weren't perfect, or completely functional, they loved me the best they could, and they worked hard to make sure that I had enough to eat, that I was clothed and that I had a place to sleep. I'll never know all that they did for me, like the things they did for me when I was a baby, but I can be grateful for the things that I know. Help me to be a grateful child, and remind me to be grateful in person. If my parents have ended their time on earth and are with you, help me to be thankful for their lives, and fill me with the hope of meeting them again in your company, where I'll be able to say thanks again.
I'm grateful for my friends, God. Even if I have only one good friend in my life right now, I'm so grateful. God, you show your love for me through my friends in ways that I sometimes overlook. They give me advice, sometimes when I need it, sometimes when I don't, which in both situations is a sign of their care for me. They listen to me complain, which I do too much, and they celebrate with me, even if things aren't always going well for them. They help me to laugh. And they help me to laugh at myself. That alone is reason to be thankful. Help me to be a good friend in return.
I'm grateful for my family, God. Yes, I know that all families are a little nutty, and mine is no exception. Even Jesus's family tree had its share of complications. But I'm thankful that, even with the nuttiness, I'm part of a family that has helped to make me the person I am. I know that they try to love me the best that they can. Help me to be a good family member, trying to help out when I can, make the phone call or pay a visit when they're lonely, and keep my mouth shut when I should be listening, or when I don't have anything sensible to add to the conversation.
I'm grateful for my job, God. It's not always a bed of roses, but at least I have a place to work and I am able to make ends meet. That's more than many people have. And I know the people I work with can drive me crazy, but they are doing their best, too. Help me to be a good co-worker, to give people the benefit of the doubt, to care for the people with whom I work, and not to take everything so seriously on the job. And help me remember that all work done freely and with a loving heart is worthy in your site.
I'm grateful, God, for all the things that I know many people in this world don't have. And that's a long list. So I'm grateful for food. And clean water that is easily available. And clothes. And heat in the winter and air conditioning and screens in the summer. I'm grateful that I can go to the doctor and get a check up and even get shots to help me avoid illness. That's a lot more than most people have. Help me to be grateful, and help me remember that I can help those who have less by being generous. That's one way of thanking you.
Did I mention how much I appreciate all the things you created? For the color of orange autumn leaves against the deep blue sky? For the smell of the sidewalk after a thunderstorm on a hot summer afternoon? For the way that the frost makes crazy patterns on windows in the winter? For the amazing smell of daffodils in the springtime? While I'm at it, I'm also grateful for the beach (that's a pretty great thing you created), the mountains (also great) and sunsets (really great). And hamburgers, too.
Most of all, God, I'm grateful for your presence in my life. You're everywhere, and if I remember to pay attention I can see you invitation to meet you in every moment of the day. I know that it is you who turn my mind to thoughts of gratitude. And when I'm tempted to focus only on the problems and worries and fears, I know that I'm being led away from you.
Now, I'm not always as thankful as I should be, but today I am. Today I will try to be grateful all day, since you are generous all day to me, like you are every day.
Originally published in America magazine.
Follow Rev. James Martin, S.J. on Twitter: www.twitter.com/JamesMartinSJ