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An Attitude of Gratitude

By Barbara Hofmeister

Giving thanks for what you have in your life is one of the easiest and fastest ways to find happiness and satisfaction. One of the first things I ask my coaching clients is to keep a gratitude journal. Each day they write at least 3 things in their journal for which they are grateful; if they have more even better. The first couple of weeks I ask them to send me an email every night to help them create the habit. And it works.

Why do I ask them to do that? Because I want them to start feeling good about themselves and their life. I want them to appreciate what they already have so the gap between that and their goals and dreams seems smaller.

For most people complaining comes automatic while giving thanks has to be done consciously and only happens on certain occasions like Thanksgiving for instance. But it is exactly that which keeps them from finding happiness and fulfillment. What we concentrate on is what we get. When we complain about what doesn't work, we enforce exactly that. Ask people if they are happy with their income and the majority will say that they don't make enough. If they are self employed they will blame it on the economy and the taxes. The employee tends to blame it on their boss or the company they work for instead of looking at their own doorstep. They concentrate on their lack of money, on their financial challenges instead of looking for a solution and being grateful for what they already have. Therefore things get worse and worse. Whatever they try, they don't seem to get out of that situation and even when they finally make some money they tend to lose it or they spend it .

What you focus on expands. When you focus on lack, lack is what you get. When you focus on abundance, abundance will come into your life. Start giving even if you have little and give without expecting anything back. If you give and expect gratitude and appreciation it will not work.

Be aware that our subconscious does everything to fulfill our wishes but it cannot understand a negation. If you say "I don't want to smoke anymore" it understands "I want to smoke" and helps you with that. If you think "I don't want to have financial problems" etc. it understands only the basics which are financial problems. Therefore it is omni-important to focus only on what you want and never on what you don't want.

As I said in the beginning, giving thanks and feeling grateful is the easiest way to feeling happy. Look at what you already have in your life and say thanks for that - each and every day. Be grateful when the sun shines and when rain gives water to the land so our food can grow. Give thanks for having a roof over your head, for the food you eat, for having family and friends in your life, and for your health and whatever wealth you have accumulated so far. Give thanks for being alive and kicking. For the flower you see grow out of the cracks in the asphalt, for a beautiful sunset, or the perfect snowflake that lands on your nose.

There are thousands of moments and things in every day of our lives that we can and should be grateful for. Start writing them down in your gratitude journal and read them every night before you go to sleep and again in the morning before you start your day. Do that for 21 days and your life will change. That is a promise.

Copyright © 2009, TrainingVisions. All rights reserved.
Barbara Hofmeister is a highly acclaimed human growth expert and published author. She helps people get their dreams back and the courage to make them come true.
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