In truth we mustn’t forget that there is always room for self-improvement. And, a life of generosity, kindness, thoughtfulness, and gratitude is worth striving for. These qualities are not easily achieved especially during times of struggle. But, our brains are our greatest ally and by starting from a pure and purposeful mindset we can model a life of thankfulness not just on our good days, but on our “bad” days too.
To help nurture a thankful mindset let’s purposefully incorporate these three practices:
1. Strive to not complain, criticize, or gossip. If you slip, rally your willpower and keep going. Most of us will slip on this one but that’s part of the growth. Mindfully redirecting our energy will help us notice the amount of time we can spend on negative thoughts and actions that can be better used.
2. Give at least one compliment daily. It can be directly to or about a person or it can be asking someone to share your appreciation of something ("I love how the weather is cooling down, don’t you?").
3. Keep a gratitude list. Doesn't need to be an elaborate write-up just a quick noting of one or more things we are grateful for on a daily basis. This is a great way to start the day or relax before bedtime.
Incorporating these steps into our everyday interactions with family, friends, and acquaintances rather than being caught up in worries and obstacles, will lead us to more satisfied and happier days.