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Attitude of gratitude

Updated: Feb 22, 2023

When life is going well, it is so much easier to dwell on those things that bring us joy. But, human beings are wired towards a negativity bias.

And let’s be honest – it can be REEEAAALLLLLLY hard to be thankful on days when everything seems to be going wrong or you are going through a valley of despair. It sounds counter-intuitive to even consider thinking about what you might be grateful for because, truly, you just need someone to listen to how tough things are for you right now.

Please don’t misunderstand me – I am not for a minute suggesting it is necessary to, or even possible to forget/distract yourself from the difficulties and struggles you may be going through. What is important to you IS important, and finding time to share that is vital.

Valley of despair

However, Ellis and Beck (the masterminds behind Cognitive Behavioural Therapy) believe that we will become happier if we practice “consistent and constructive action” 1

Over the last 20 years scientists have been collating evidenced-based data proving that “Gratitude is more than just a momentary good feeling. Scientists who have studied written gratitude interventions, such as gratitude letters or journals, have found benefits for an individual’s mental health and well-being.” 2

You might think about creating a Gratitude jar. In it could be pictures, small objects, or little post-it notes of things you are thankful for so that if you are having a low or fed up day, you can remind yourself of all the things that are precious to you. Maybe a supportive card from a friend, or a pebble from a lovely day at the beach.

I asked family and friends, young and old, what some of their top 5 “gratitudes” might be and between us we came up with the following list:

· Chocolate

· Not being jumped up at or chased by dogs whilst out for a run (!)

· Woodland

· Someone else doing a chore for you

· Lovely home

· Tigers

· Cats

· Pringles

· Loving parents

· Board games

· Music

· Snowdrops

· Wrens

· Signs of spring

· Family and friends

· Lie-ins

· Prayer

· Lions

· Laughter

· Crochet

· Football

· Ballet

· A healthy enough body that can take me places I want to visit

· Inspiring podcasts

· Audiobooks

I wonder what your list would contain today? I would love to know – please do drop me a message below!

There are lots of different ways to record gratitude – here are just a few examples (see below for more ideas):

· Journals

· audio-journal apps

· videoing a second a day of something precious to you

· meditation

· sending an uplifting message to someone else with a photo or thought about something you are thankful for

· If you have a faith, give thanks to your God

This is something I still have to practice regularly, but when I do remember, I am always glad I have taken the time to practice an attitude of gratitude.

What are your thoughts on this?

Further information and inspiration for gratitude:

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Sarah Marfleet
Sarah Marfleet
Feb 22, 2023

Thanks Chloë, I LOVE the idea of a gratitude jar! 💙 So much to be thankful for, even on those days when I have to mentally dig deep to find them. Post-it notes and sharpies are my go to for jotting down things I'm grateful for... and I'm reminded to do so via my meditation app. Today I'm thankful for good people to connect with professionally whilst working remotely; for enjoying an exercise class with my Mum over Zoom this morning; and emerging snowdrops announcing Spring is on its way! xx

Chloe Gracey
Chloe Gracey
Feb 22, 2023
Replying to

Thank you Sarah! I really enjoyed hearing your thoughts on this! You have reminded me that colourful post-it notes and highlighters are on my list of things for which I am grateful!😂


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