6 Ways To Cultivate A Grateful Heart Today
Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
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If we are truly seeking to cultivate a grateful heart we need to begin the “practice of gratitude”. We must be intentional and take practical steps to create a habit and re-train our thought process.
Today I want to challenge you to pick at least one (or more!) of these 6 Ways to Cultivate a Grateful Heart and act on it! Message me (found in the bottom right corner), email, comment below or post in our Imperfect Moms Facebook Group which of the 6 ways you are going to start today!
Start & End Your Day By Counting Your Blessings
One really easy way to get started on a gratitude practice is to make a habit of counting your blessings both morning and night. You don’t even have to write them down, as in a gratitude journal, if that seems too overwhelming. Simply take a few minutes when you wake up and before you go to bed to thank God and remind your own heart to focus on gratitude. This is a great way to begin cementing this new practice into your routine. Work through the list of people in your life that you are thankful for. Praise Him for the many provisions He has provided. Give thanks for the freedoms you have. Before long, you’ll easily notice that His blessings abound. Here is a great song to get you focused on counting your blessings!
Gratitude One Bite at a Time
I don’t know about you, but I can tend to go “all in” and then quickly fizz out when trying to create a new habit. I’ve seen time and again that easing into any habit is usually the best approach. When you take it “one bite at a time” you’ll be more inclined to continue moving forward. If you are having a tough time, try not to put too much pressure on yourself. You don’t need to come up with grand examples of gratitude when you’re just starting out. Even just appreciating the bed where you’re starting and ending the day can be something to add to your initial list. God would rather have your heart honest and grateful about the small things than to come up with a huge list and be insincere. Sometimes simply recognizing a tiny blessing can have a big impact!
I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart; I will recount all of your wonderful deeds. Psalm 9:1
The Gratitude Stack
A helpful method for remembering your new gratitude habit is to add it on to your existing routine. This is called habit stacking and it works for many people very well. Take whatever you normally do in the morning and night. Include a few extra minutes to think of what you are grateful for. Use those minutes to read a Bible verse that you keep on an index card on gratitude or say a quick prayer just thanking God for something.
Here’s a practical example. I love having my coffee every morning. If you drink coffee or tea in the morning, this is a great connection to make. Drinking your morning coffee will soon become a reminder to give thanks for something each day. You’ve now started to create your own gratitude stack!
Create Visual Reminders
If you find yourself forgetting to do it or skipping out on your new task, add some visual cues to your environment. Post-it notes and index cards are great for this. Stick one on your nightstand. Add another to your bathroom mirror. Keep an ongoing list on your fridge. We often leave a kraft paper “poster” up on the back of our door and write down things we are thankful for with a sharpie – our kids LOVE this! Also, many people love visual reminders of printable art or adding it into your home decor!
Technology comes in handy for reminders, as well. Set an alarm on your phone so that you don’t leave the house or fall asleep without taking time to thank God for what you are thankful for!
A Gratitude Flip Flop
You can also try the opposite – a gratitude flip flop 🙂 Just a note- this gets convicting (don’t ask how I know LOL) You can turn complaints around into something positive. Ask God to help make you aware of when you are tempted to complain. Then ask His help to flip it around and find something to be grateful for!
Maybe like me, you have a bad back. You wake up sore and you don’t want to get out of bed. Obviously, you could focus on your sore back, but when you are practicing gratitude you want to look for the good. You could remind yourself that you’re in overall good health and you have a safe place to sleep. Focusing on what you do have to be thankful for can do wonders for your outlook. Try to find the silver lining. It really helps!
Different than a gratitude journal, you can take gratitude notes! It can be a really good habit to jot things down during the day as they happen. It only takes a few seconds to make a note of what you feel grateful for in that moment. You could keep a running list on the fridge or write the notes on notecards. You could also write them on the back of scripture cards. We have FREE scripture cards on Gratitude in this Mom’s Pockets Bible Study! This gives you a great way to reflect on it later during your quiet time or bedtime routine.
Hopefully, you now see these 6 Ways To Cultivate A Grateful Heart really aren’t all that difficult. A few small changes to your routine and you’ll find it’s actually quite easy to implement this practice and get started today!
So I want to know, which of the 6 are you going to start now? Let me know!
Come back tomorrow as we are still taking steps to Cultivate a Grateful Heart together!
Here’s what we are exploring over the 5-day challenge:
How to Choose Gratitude Throughout Your Day
How to Show Gratitude by Using Your Words
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Talk to you soon,
O Lord, You have pleaded the case for my soul; You have redeemed my life.