The Practice of Gratitude

field gratitude

If you know me at all you’ll know that I’m a total nerd. Most of my spare time is spent trying to learn more and more, usually through podcasts or audiobooks. Recently someone recommended the book “The Code of the Extraordinary Mind” by Vishen Lakhiani. This book is loaded with all sorts of great information and “hacks” to make your life better. But one thing that really stood out to me is the idea of being both happy with what you have while simultaneously having well-defined goals and the desire to pursue them.

There is, unfortunately, a commonly held belief that happiness is a destination. That we will be happy when our circumstances change, when we find someone to love, when we have more time, when we get a promotion, new house, etc. We are happy when these things happen, but only momentarily. Before we know it we are on to the next achievement or thing. This causes
us to run ourselves ragged in pursuit of happiness or success. Lakhiani says that when we achieve a good balance of gratitude for the now and striving for the future, amazing things end up lining up for us. We start to see opportunities unfold AND we have more fun in the process.

Just like the law of attraction states – like attracts like. So in order to attract things that make us happy we must first BE happy.

Here’s where my dare for you comes in – I dare you to find things each day that bring you happiness, gratitude and joy. I dare you to take it to the next level by creating an actual practice of gratitude – whether this be a gratitude journal, creating an online gratitude group, meditating
about things that you are grateful for, etc. The sky is the limit.

Numerous studies have found that people who actually create a practice experience much greater benefits – both physically and mentally.
The next dare is to get really clear on what you want for your future. I dare you to redefine success and look at your life as a whole. Is success feeling connected, peaceful, and happy? Or is it finding purpose, helping others, and seeing the world? Success can be defined in a million ways and should incorporate your most important values. Make sure to write these down
and revise them regularly. The more specific you can get, the better.

For example, one of my goals that I write each day is “I’ve shifted the culture positively and I am a leader.” Writing it in the present tense as if it’s already happened can help our brain wire in ways that supports goal

Let’s all keep daring to work toward being more happy, grateful, AND striving toward our best selves.