Gratitude . The new religion.
I am grateful to you, the person reading these words. Bless you, for your precious time.
I give thanks for all the times you have smiled today. I am most pleased that you are alive. Our paths are crossing (again) for a reason. You are either a blessing or a lesson. All lessons are blessings when you practice gratitude, so- thank you in advance!
I recall reuniting with my father in 2015 after burying my mother the previous year. My old man and I had been apart since I was about a year old.
I had already been practicing gratitude for quite some time before our paths intersected. Overwhelmed with feelings of appreciation at our first meet, I was most grateful to lay eyes on this gorgeous man and to complete the missing puzzle piece of my identity. This attitude allowed our relationship to develop at a natural and steady pace. I had questions that merited answers, of course, however, I was more thankful for the experience itself.
In retrospect, I truly appreciate having been reunited with my father at an age where he had all the wisdom in the world to share. It was as if he had been practicing all his life to gift me personalized lessons. Through his transparency and honesty about struggles that he overcame in his lifetime, I was able to rid myself of cigarette addiction. We shared many character quirks that made me stick out like a sore thumb in my mom’s side of the family. Our relationship was instrumental in my journey to self-improvement. We didn’t have too much time, but we had more than enough! I give thanks!
I have been practicing gratitude for over seven years now.
Self-help books and spiritual life coaches all agree that gratitude is about all you needed to feel abundant.
Here is some of what I have experienced increasingly over the years:
How does it work? A peak into the brain
With a little practice, you will soon be able to convert any negative thought/feeling almost instantly!
Neuroplasticity is the ability of the brain to restructure itself physically to create better neuron connections. Biology doesn’t get much more exciting than this!
When you repeat a thought or action often enough, the brain creates what is called a neural pathway. This neural pathway is a route that the brain draws to make it easier for you to repeat a task. Each time you repeat a process, you strengthen your memory of the new route until your action becomes a habit.
Introducing a new way of doing things can be compared to walking a road less traveled. If you continue walking the path, grass ceases to grow there, making the route more visible. Before you know it, the old abandoned pathway is no longer recognizable because it has new grass growing on it!
How do we activate gratitude using Neuroplasticity as a tool?
EMOTE – Feeling grateful is what’s going to trigger your brain to adapt
Feel the abundance until your face lights up with joy! Emotions command a response from the brain. Attaching emotions to your actions reinforces the importance of the activity.
EXTERNALISE – Express your gratitude externally.
Participate in activities that complement your generous spirit. You could cook a delicious meal for your loved ones or simply sit in meditative silence. Be thankful also for things outside of you. Each time you see them, your brain will be spontaneously reminded to be grateful.
EXERCISE – Express gratitude every day.
We have covered this part extensively because it is of pivotal importance! Repitition is key.Verbalize your gratitude daily. Speak it into existence.
Have a be-you-tiful week. Stay blessed!
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