Imagery by Abigail Oliver Photography
2021 is fast approaching and I really wanted to do a blog post all about gratitude. This year has been such a challenge for absolutely everyone, however I feel a huge sense of gratitude as for me it has been a completely life changing year. Right at the beginning of Lockdown 1.0 I felt extremely stressed as my control freak brain could not cope with all the sudden changes and complete uncertainty. I decided a few weeks in to take control and invest some time in myself and my mindset through the power of personal development. Through doing so I learned so much about gratitude, enabling me to grow as a person and really seize every opportunity in front of me despite what life throws.
I have always been someone who actively practices gratitude and I have always tried to turn a negative situation into a positive one by remembering what I am grateful for. Whatever situation you are in, this isn’t always easy, however this year what has begun to make total sense to me is if you learn how to practice gratitude properly it doesn’t just become easier, it becomes an unconscious habit.
So, what do I mean when I talk about personal development? For some people this two-letter phrase can be interpreted as ‘one of those things I would never do’, as honestly it is just totally unknown if you have never given it a go. For me, my personal development consists of a miracle morning power hour (blog post here), although it is totally up to you in what way you do it. It could be as simple as listening to a growth podcast in the car, reading 20 minutes of an influential book in the evening or even just watching a 5-minute motivational video in the morning to help you start your day on a good note. In all honesty, it doesn’t overly matter what you do as long as it works for you, however I would say there are two key things to be featured as part of it. The first is, as part of doing this, you need to be completing gratitude each day (which you will automatically learn more about when reading or listening to personal development). You could either write a whole list each day of what you are grateful for, or what I think is even better is to write 5 things you were grateful for that day before you go to sleep. These 5 things need to be super specific and usually apply only to that day. What then happens is you begin to look for them throughout the day and start to live in this unconscious state of gratitude.
The second thing to consider is you need to be consuming personal development from people who you respect, admire and ultimately you would like to be like. Why on earth would you bother listening to someone who hasn’t done the things you want to do, or who doesn’t think in the same way that you do/ would like to? Finding the right content is all about finding the right people to consume their knowledge from, almost like finding your own tribe. For me, my whole journey started with author, actress and all-round super star ‘Mel Wells’ when I heard her speak at a conference just before beginning my personal development journey. I totally connected with her and then the way she writes. This was then followed by my love and appreciation for ‘The 5am Club’ by Robin Sharma and ‘Rich Dad, Poor Dad’ by Robert Kiyosaki. Two authors who practice what they preach and totally inspired me. My personal development now totally stems from the skills I learned initially from these three influential people on my life.
Not only do I feel grateful for discovering personal development and the feeling of my eyes opening so much to all the wonderful things in our world, but I am so so grateful for the shift in my mindset and what practicing gratitude has taught me. Life is by no means perfect, but if we all did this every single day, I have a funny feeling that it would soon all start to look an awful lot better.
I would love it if you could share your gratitude list today with me! Feel free to leave a comment below or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org
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