(Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links. At no extra cost to you, a small percentage of your purchase helps to maintain the expenses of this site.)
Gratefulness is, essentially, a heart issue.
However, it is one that can be cultivated. I’m finding more and more that I need structure and ritual to help cultivate the heart issues.
Basically, being grateful or not comes down to habits. Specifically, habits of thought. Habits of thought can be trained. I’ve learned a lot from Ann Voskamp. Her book, One Thousand Gifts, addresses this issue. It includes a challenge to give thanks for one thousand gifts we’ve been given, at the rate of three a day. Stopping life on purpose to give thanks. Stopping life to search our minds for gifts that we’ve forgotten. Pausing to be grateful, to give thanks, instead of rushing on.
The natural way is to see the one black spot on an all white page. Maybe because we’re blessed in so many areas, it’s easier to see what’s missing, what’s wrong. I fall into bad habits. Worry. Fear. Envy. Robbing me of gratefulness. Eclipsing the thankfulness.
So I need to re-commit to developing the habit of pausing to remember gifts. I need the structure and the ritual. I need a pause planned into my day. Because my natural habit of thought leans towards the negative. Without the guard rail of ritual, I slide down the slippery slope of ingratitude.
A word from Ann Voskamp.
What helps you develop the habit of gratitude?