Gratitude! We all know what it means, yet how many of us actually practice gratitude on a daily basis? What does practicing gratitude mean?

What images comes into your head when you hear or see the word gratitude? When was the first time you heard or saw “gratitude”?

Are you aware of the attitude that we have towards life’s ups and downs determines the quality of our lives?

I was never taught anything about gratitude in my childhood other than to say “thank you” when someone outside of our family gave me money, a gift or bought food for me. My parents never taught me anything about gratitude by being a positive role model themselves. I never heard my parents say “thank you” to each other. I never saw my parents show their appreciation for each other. Nor did I ever see my parents being grateful for what they did for each other.

My father was a very bitter and angry person and still is. He is a taker and never did I see him show gratitude for all that he has. My mother is more of a giver than a taker. She gives to others whenever she can. She rarely takes anything from others. I spent my first eight years of my life with my mother as father was living abroad. So I picked up my mother’s generosity and I gave more than I would take. Yet, somewhere along the way with my journey of life, things shifted.

I had become a very bitter and angry person with so much hatred, who was living life in an extremely dark place after I lost what felt like everything that I had worked so damn hard for. It was not my fault and I felt I was the victim.  I had been holding onto so much resentment from my past that was creating much illnesses for me. My health was deteriorating each day as I would wake up and muddle through each day thinking that I was hard done by. I felt I was the victim to all that happened to me and I was creating more ill health as I continued to live my life with this poor attitude.

I was aged 39 when I first heard about practicing gratitude from a group of people who was engaged in personal development. I was introduced to them through a business opportunity that my cousin Denny was involved in back in 2011. Then in December 2011, I was given a tool to use to help me focus on the positive things that was happening in my life. This helped me to focus on the present and being mindful to everything around me.

I started to write in my “gratitude journal” that was to become the most powerful tool I have used to attract more of what I want into my life. Gradually, I could feel my spirits lifting and I was more mindful of my surroundings. I enjoyed writing a list of the things that made me happy that day before I went to sleep at the end of my day. As I was feeling good from within, I felt my moods lifting too and this was a huge benefit to me as I suffer from seasonal affective disorder each winter. So I was feeling energised, happy and content with my life.

My life was beginning to get brighter, bigger and better. I had shifted my poor attitude to a richer one of gratitude. I was becoming the person that everyone wants to be surrounded with. There was a huge spring in my step each day and this was magical to me. I felt fear lifting from me and there was an abundance of happiness, health, wealth and love wherever I went, whatever I did and with whoever I was with. I learned why my life had turned out the way it did. I learned why the things I had was taken away from me. I learned why I was attracting every negative situation to me. I learned to never allow that to happen to me ever again.

So I have been practicing gratitude everyday since that amazing December in 2011. I have filled a huge number of notebooks with all that I was grateful for. I love to shop for bright and appealing notebooks wherever I go.  I continue to inspire others of how powerful it is for our lives when we take time to practice gratitude daily. I have seen how people lose whatever they had when they were ungrateful each day just like I was. I have seen my loved ones lose whatever they had because they were ungrateful as they complain and criticise so I told myself that I shall never become one of them.

My relationships have become so much richer because I am grateful for every one I have in my life. I have a great laugh with my sons now. We can have fun, banter with each other and we are more relaxed with each other nowadays. This is a humongous shift from what life was like for us before I began my magical journey with my best friend, my gratitude journal. My relationship with my ideal partner has become so fulfilling because I express my gratitude to him by writing thank you notes for him, sending him a thank you text now and again and I also ask my sons to do the same. I am leading by example. I thank my mum for her continual support and give her a hug where I never used to.

I offer my time, support and listening ear to those who need it. I give food whenever I can to people who are less fortunate than me as I see them crouched down on the streets in our city centre in the freezing cold. I am more patient with people than I ever was. I am more calmer, more at ease and relaxed with any difficult situations that arise. I feel I am making fantastic progress with my journey of life and adventure.

As I gradually became more positive, inspiring, loving, caring, compassionate and empathetic I noticed that my well being and health had become much better and stronger. I had more energy to do what I wanted to do each day. I was getting less colds, flus and coughs. I was much more resilient to challenges, set backs, hurdles, twists and turns and I loved my new lease of life. I shall never allow myself to go back to my old self now.

I am attracting more of what I want into my life each day and eliminating the negative, the toxic and the dramatic too. I choose to never engage with anyone who are less than positive and inspiring to me. I am aware of the huge impact these people have on my happiness so I have a clear boundary put into place. I am what people have called “living in a positive bubble” and that is my choice. I know what is working for me and I shall continue to do what creates happiness, health, wealth and love in abundance for me and my loved ones.

So next time you are thinking why your life is treating you unfairly, turn it around by practicing gratitude and invest some time to become happier. Your body, mind and soul shall thank you for it. You shall become so much more productive as your energy levels begins to soar. Go on! Do it for the first thirty days and commit to it for the rest of your life! It’s approaching a new year and a new beginning so let’s get you to start a new habit for a bigger, better and brighter life!