Gratitude is the Fastest Path to Joy

Being grateful goes beyond the obligatory “thank you.” It is an attitude and mindset that permeates your entire being. When you are grateful for what you have, your heart sings. The world looks brighter and happier. Physically, your body responds to a feeling of gratitude with a stronger immune system, better sleep and lower blood pressure. And, being grateful can help attract to you what you’d like to manifest in your life.

Want to cultivate more gratitude in your life?

Start a gratitude practice today. Your practice can be as simple or elaborate as you want. Here are some ideas to get you started:

  • Keep a gratitude journal. Spend a few moments each day — perhaps as you are getting ready to go to bed — and write down at least three things that you are grateful for. It could be something that happened to you, something you saw or felt, or something that you did that day.
  • Visually track your moments of joy and gratitude with small objects. I keep a container of small stones on my home altar. Every time I experience joy or gratitude I move a stone from the container to a straw basket. It is amazing how quickly the basket fills up!
  • Give a genuine compliment at least one person daily. Mark Twain said, “I can live two months on a good compliment.” Yes, the recipient of the compliment feels good. But so will you, the giver — and this creates a sense of connection.
  • Feel the power of and be grateful for nature and the simple things in life. Here’s a video to get you started — and fill you with awe for our beautiful planet.
  • Really notice and look at the people who you pass by each day. Smile and watch your joy spread to others.
  • Write a letter to someone in your life that you are grateful for. Send it to him or her, or, rather than mailing it, visit and read it to the recipient.

Keep up your gratitude practice for a month and see the difference it makes in your life.

The Buddha said it best: You have no cause for anything but gratitude and joy.

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