I’m experimenting with something at the moment… Intense, vivid gratitude. Pouring oil on the flames of gratitude. Elaborating on any spark. Turning the volume up allll the way. Here’s why…
When I chatted to my lovely life coach reiki healer Debbie last month, she told me (in the nicest possible way) that my gratitude felt a little washed out. I was saying things like, “I’m so grateful Mark and I still have work, because so many people don’t,” but I wasn’t really *feeling* it. I was doing wishy-washy watercolour gratitude.
Since then, I have been concentrating on vivid, full-colour, intense gratitude. Any time I have a sense of, “Oh! That’s lovely!” or “Yum, delicious!” or “Thank goodness it’s not this time last year,” or “I’m so excited about…” I don’t just brush it off. I double down on it. I really relish the feeling and go deep into it and try to intensify it as much as possible.
Let me tell you, it’s delightful! I’ve heard (for years) how powerful gratitude is, and I’ve always kind of known it. I have a sporadic gratitude journal and I once (at age 16) sent Oprah a list of 1000 things I was grateful for. She wrote back and may or may not have signed the letter.
But this is next level: this feels like searching out things that are going really well, and shining a spotlight on them. I’m surprised what a difference it’s made, surprised (and delighted) how much more positive I feel.
I am grateful for my health (of course) and celebrating the fact that my husband hasn’t been hit by a car for a year (see previous point re: this time last year). I’m grateful for a lessening of grief. I’m grateful that my kids aren’t in that difficult first year of baby/toddler. I’m grateful that Sweet Life is flying and work is thrilling. I’m grateful that it’s Friday afternoon and we’re going to eat homemade pizza and drink bubbly tonight. What a beautiful world we live in!
I also keep thinking of when I was about 16 and we went away on a school retreat (like camp, I guess, but religious). They were trying to teach us (all girls) how to accept compliments. Someone would say something nice to us, and instead of brushing it off we had to say, “Please elaborate!” What a lesson!
So now any time I feel grateful, I think: “Please elaborate!”
And then I do.