For such a long time, I really didn’t understand the concept of gratitude. I knew that it was polite to say thank you when someone gave you something or did something for you. I understood that if I had a job and worked hard, then I received compensation for that work, usually in the form of money. I knew that however much I didn’t want it, my parents were always there for me in times of hardship. I was aware that I was born and raised in a beautiful, safe and fairly stable country. And I knew deep down that as a white person from a comfortable middle class family, I never truly had to worry about anything to do with financial security or with being homed, clothed and fed.
I knew all of these things but what I didn’t know was how to be grateful for them. I just took them for granted. It’s not that I expected these things in my life, it’s just that I knew no different and didn’t make any effort to look outside my little box.
How Travelling the World Changed my Life…
It’s such a cliche to say this but it’s true; I really didn’t start to open my mind until I started traveling around the world. Experiencing different countries, cultures, values and mindsets allowed me to broaden every facet of my being and for that, I am forever thankful.
Over the years and through my travels, I came to many realisations and picked up many bits of knowledge. One of the most valuable things I learned was to lead with my heart in all that I do. This in turn ramped up my positivity levels times a hundred and changed my way of thinking which was naturally followed by an attitude of gratitude.
I have found that in my life, sometimes bad things happen, sometimes these things are small and sometimes they are big. However, whenever I acknowledge and compare the bad things to all of the things I am grateful for, the good things; I always find that they outweigh the bad things ten fold.
It’s that simple and to top it off, I have found that the more grateful you are, the more things you have to be grateful for! You become like a magnet for the good stuff! I also found that I had everything I needed and I didn’t need to fill my life with unnecessary ‘things’ anymore. Things like clothes, cars, gadgets, make up, anything that I tried to fill the empty spaces with. I began to value human interaction so much more and also to reconnect with Mother Earth and all of her offerings. I began to appreciate myself on a whole other level, I learned that I have a multitude of love to give and that I am loved.
To say that my life has been changed by practicing gratitude is an understatement. Instead of focusing on the negative aspects of a situation, I change my point of view to a positive and grateful one and it literally turns the situation on its head. I have experienced this often with different workplaces. We’ve all worked in that toxic environment that seems to just suck the life out of you. And quite often we can’t leave said workplace straight away meaning we have to go to work everyday with a foreboding of what the day is going to be like. I have found that by focusing on the things I am grateful for about the workplace – for example, the fact that I even have a job, that weekly pay check, some of the great people I have met there, my physical health and ability to be able to perform the job – it has made getting on with the job so much easier. It has also brought to my attention all of the good things which has instantly put a smile on my face and changed the way I view the job.
These principles can be applied to any situation. Having an attitude of gratitude allows you to open your heart and live with love, empathy, compassion and happiness. It has actually been studied and proven to improve physical and mental health, your immune system and your sleep patterns. It can help to improve your relationships and reduces symptoms of depression.
Endless Positive Benefits
I found this great flow chart which really shows the endless benefits of a daily gratitude practice –
Whether you write your gratitude down in a journal, think grateful thoughts during your morning ritual or actively show appreciation and gratitude towards others and yourself throughout your day, there are only positive benefits that will come from practicing gratitude regularly.
Get ready to feel great!!
Love Kat xx
Here is where I found some info on gratitude – https://www.psychologytoday.com/au/blog/what-mentally-strong-people-dont-do/201504/7-scientifically-proven-benefits-gratitude