6 Everyday Ways to Make Gratitude an Action Word

What you appreciate appreciates. It increases in value. Gratitude is a powerful thing, which has us asking ourselves — How can we truly, deeply feel more of it?

When it comes to generating those big, awe-inspiring, soul-penetrating feelings of gratitude, ACTION IS KEY.

Mere lip service to gratitude is meaningless.

You express and experience true gratitude by HOW YOU INTERACT with the things in your world, and by WHERE YOU CHOOSE TO PLACE YOUR FOCUS.

In every passing moment you have a very conscious choice – – you can focus on what is abundant in your life, or you can focus on what is lacking.  There is never a shortage of either, and whichever you favor will expand before your eyes.

What you choose to put your attention on enlarges, and tightens its grip on your world.

The simple but powerful act of really seeing and appreciating what’s in front of you expands your freedom, creativity, and peaceful contentedness with your life, just as it is.  This is the true essence of joy.

Gratitude is the beating heart of happiness and sufficiency.

But sometimes feeling truly “grateful” is easier said than done, right?

Gratitude requires presence and patience, and in the don’t-stop-until-you-drop daily grind of modern society, that can be hard to tap into.

But never fear.

We’ve identified 6 everyday ways you can turn gratitude into an ACTION WORD.

Take a look at our list, and then share your own rituals of gratitude by making a comment at the bottom of this article.

You help us experience an outpouring of gratitude with every contribution you make, and we are so very thankful to share your breakthroughs, wisdom and joy.

6 Everyday Ways to Make Gratitude an Action Word:

1. Cherish the infinite value of “little” things

“If we could see the miracle of a single flower clearly, our whole life would change.”

A seemingly insignificant moment, given the proper attention, can become an infinitely magnificent world in itself. A simple meal can become a body- and soul-nourishing masterpiece. A sunset can become a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to connect with the immeasurable sense of wonder and astonishment that resides within you at all times, waiting to be unleashed.

With every experience we can grow our energy, or shrink it. Fixate your energy into the thing in front of you, and it will be reciprocated back to you. Let your energy scatter recklessly around you, and it will land on nothing in particular. Allow yourself to become absorbed in the “little” things, and you’ll discover just how big they can be.

2.  Enjoy and care for your body

“Keeping your body healthy is an expression of gratitude to the whole cosmos – the trees, the clouds, everything.”
-Thich Nhat Hanh

You are a container of energy. Be mindful of what you let pass through – from the food you eat, to the emotions you keep – because everything shares the same space inside of you. Continually cleanse yourself with the power of motion and strength. Feel your heart beating in your chest, and sweat forming on your skin. Learn to love these signs of wellness and vitality. Your body is the only home you have. Use it, or lose it.

3.  Watch your language

“Words are the guides to acts; the mouth makes the first move.”
-Rabbi Leon da Modena

Language is a powerful catalyst for action and emotion. Every word you utter becomes your curse, or your blessing. Therein lies the beauty of words… they are within your power to choose, and those that you select become your reality. Pause to think before you speak, choose the words that are pure and true to your experience, and express them gently. This simple act has a profoundly positive affect on your emotional life, and on the world around you.

4.  Wash your bowl

“A monk told Joshu, ‘I have just entered the monastery. Please teach me.’
Joshu asked, ‘Have you eaten your rice porridge?’
The monk replied, ‘I have eaten.’
Joshu said, ‘Then you had better wash your bowl.’
At that moment the monk was enlightened.”
-Famous Zen Story

There is a simple profoundness about this advice. It encourages us not to get caught up in over-thinking the meaning and purpose of life, and instead, simply DO. Do the absolute best we can with what we have, when we have it. And in the washing, you will find all that you need.

After you’ve finished eating, wash your bowl with mindfulness and grace. When you change, neatly fold your clothes and carefully put them away. When you prepare food, wipe the counter and put away your ingredients.

This isn’t just about mindfulness – it’s about finishing what you begin. It’s about total presence and full completion before emotionlessly rushing off to the next task.

Treat your things with value, and they will instantly become more valuable.

5.  Replace complaints with contentment

“He who avoids complaint invites happiness.”
-Abu Bakr

The reality is – – most of us become too easily swept away by self-righteousness and victimhood when it comes to the behaviors of others, especially the ones we love.

Choose your battles wisely. It is better to conquer yourself than to win a thousand wars.

Complaint is poverty. Gratitude is wealth. You choose which will define you.

6.  Be swept away by awe

“He who can no longer pause to wonder and stand rapt in awe, is as good as dead; his eyes are closed.”
-Albert Einstein

When we repeat the same movements day-in and day-out they become invisible to us, and we disengage with our experience.

Step outside of your everyday box and challenge yourself to engage with something new – and maybe even a little scary. Force your eyes see, your brain to fire off new neurons, and your heart to understand something new. Invite new epiphanies in everyday, so you may experience those transcendent moments of wonder that forever change how you experience life, and the world.

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