Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others. – Marcus Tullius Cicero
I once took a personality test that claimed one of my top strengths was gratitude. I’d like to believe that this claim is true, but recently I have been truly tested in my personal life. In this recent struggle, I have often found myself questioning why bad things happen to good people or why bad things happen all at once. It is at those times of sadness, fear and doubt that gratitude has served me the most.
In my willPower infusion® and yoga classes, I typically ask my students to think of at least one thing they are grateful for at that very moment and then bow their heads to their hearts to honor that simple vibration. I do this because it is the quickest way to change a negative attitude to a positive one.
Gratitude truly has the power to shift your energy because it taps into the vibrations of the heart. People can be moved and inspired to do great things when engaging in these kinds of expressions. In fact, it is believed that this type of shift can even effect the greater good of the entire planet.
So, when do we turn on the gratitude? Dr. Bill Larkin, author of Growing the Positive Mind believes that we should reflect on pulses of gratitude 10 times for 10 seconds each. This can lead a person to other primary positive emotion pulsing practices of love, peace, hope and joy. According to Dr. Larkin this helps build “emotional muscle.”
If you take part in social media, you may have recently noticed many people reflecting on what they are grateful for publicly. I myself as well as other willPower instructors take part in a group called Every Day Gratitude started by Melody Lima, a fellow yoga instructor in NJ. If you aren’t in to publicly saying thank you, consider keeping a journal or adding a gratitude ritual with your family at dinner time.
However you decide to reflect, at the very least, don’t wait until Thanksgiving to practice gratitude. For a happier and healthier you, practice gratitude every day.