It’s so hard to believe that we are in the last two months of 2014! Before you know it, the hustle and bustle of the holidays will be upon us. It’s the time of year that can be so beautiful and blessed for many, but also sad and lonely for others. We all know the saying that “someone always has it worse” than us. But how often do we keep that in mind? How often do we go about cursing people out in our heads for something as simple as cutting us off in traffic, or taking too long in the self-checkout line at the grocery story (guilty as charged)? When is the last time you truly expressed to your spouse just how much you appreciated what they do for you (regardless of how small the action is or if it’s something they do routinely — sometimes we just need to hear the words)?
When you change your mindset to change your habits, you develop a new attitude. And with this 30 day challenge, my hope is that we all develop an attitude of gratitude that comes as second nature. So for the next 30 days (and hopefully beyond), I challenge you to take one action step in focusing on only what you are thankful for. I challenge you to write down how you want to feel and what you want to accomplish at the end of the 30 days. What are some things you need to let go of or embrace? Who are some people you need to close things out with or situations that need to be addressed? What areas have you been neglecting instead of expressing gratitude?
We’ll be going through a daily challenge and each week will focus on a different area:
Week 3: Gratitude for my children/family
Week 4: Gratitude for others
Day 1: Meditate. We have to learn to quiet the noise and center ourselves. If you’ve been struggling with a tough decision or other challenge, be still, meditate and pray on it.
Day 2: Write out at least 10 affirmations. Be sure to write in first-person and be sure to keep them somewhere you can easily see them on a daily basis.
Day 3: Relax. Take at least 30 minutes out of your day to unwind and be content doing absolutely nothing. When is the last time you had a mental shutdown?
Day 4: Phone a friend. Meaning…pick up the phone and dial their number – not texting, inboxing them on FB or any other social media platform. But call up a good friend you haven’t spoken to in a while.
Day 5: Read. No, not your Facebook feed but an actual book. Reading really is powerful and a very powerful way to reconnect with, and unlock what lies within you.
Day 6: Exercise. It doesn’t matter what state you’re in. Exercise is a great way to clear your mind and regain some much needed energy.
Day 7: Write yourself a love letter. What do you need to forgive yourself for? What do you need to embrace?
Week 2: Daily Gratitude (Spouse/Significant Other)
Day 8: Write your spouse a love letter. Include in your letter why you fell in love with them & the dreams you have for your future together.
Day 9: Today is “yes” day. Dedicate this day to your spouse. Whatever they need, show them how grateful you are to have them by giving it to them.
Day 10: Record a video. No, that kind of video. Record a thank you video for your spouse about something they did recently that you apprciated. And let him/her know how you’ll thank them when they get home.
Day 11: Start a journal. Together. Be sure to write down what you appreciated of your spouse that day, and then read them back to each other daily.
Day 12: Surprise them. Bring home their favorite snack or dessert and then give it to them after dinner.
Day 13: Brag about them. Tell your kids and anyone else that is around, why you love them and why you’re grateful to have them.
Day 14: Turn it off. Your cell phone, your tablet or any other gadget when you talk to your spouse. Dedicate your alone time only to them.
Day 15: Showing is always better than telling. You know exactly what will make them go to bed with a smile on their face, so do exactly that.
Be sure to check back for the next two weeks of this Gratitude Challenge.
What ways do you actively express or nurture gratitude?