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Tracy's Wellness Journey: Gratitude is Everything

Grat-i-tude
Noun
The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.

Cultivating gratitude is a skill. Experts say that the practice of gratitude can help us to see our situation in a way that lessens anxiety or panic. It can open us up to a new, more positive way of thinking. Developing an attitude of gratitude can boost our careers, health, relationships and emotions. It can lead to being more optimistic, less self-centered and a higher self-esteem, but it takes practice.

At this stage of my life, I feel as though gratitude is an integral part of my life; yet I don’t have a practice in place. For me it is more of a way of life. What I have noticed as of late is that although I am thankful for the relationships and things that I have in my life, I get frustrated easily, have less patience and struggle to find that inner happiness.  Sometimes I wonder if I am just trying too hard.

The more I learn about the practice of gratitude, the more I see room for improvement. The one that I currently use most often is sending personalized greeting cards with a special handwritten note of appreciation or thanks.  

However, there are many ways to practice gratitude.

My top five favorites that I plan to implement are:  

  • Appreciate everything: Even the challenges that you might face.
  • Practice mindfulness: This is not easy for me; but I am practicing, and it is getting easier.
  • Express yourself: Don’t be afraid to speak your mind from a heart-centered place.
  • Volunteer: I have had it on my heart to take a mission trip. This December, I am traveling to Guatemala for seven days. I believe this will be life changing.
  • Improve happiness in other areas of life: Learning to make myself a priority is hard, I still struggle to find a healthy balance between work, family and personal care.

As we move into this holiday season, we challenge you to share your gratitude practices with us on Facebook and Instagram to raise the vibe in our community. Show us what your grateful for by tagging us on Facebook @EverythingBrevard.com and on Instagram @EverythingBrevard.

An example is this photo of boxes. When recently redecorating my office, I choose these boxes specifically to store items that were previously in my desk. “Be Still & Know” contains little trinkets that I have collected over the years. My blessed box is where I keep my bills; the love box contains cards, notes and sentimental messages that I have received; and the grateful box is filled with an assortment of cards — thank you, birthday, sympathy, love, just thinking about you.

To me, when I see the beautiful boxes, it is a reminder of all the gifts I have in my life and how grateful I am for the ability to do the work I do and connect with the people who are most important in my life.  

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