Gratitude is a powerful practice.
Gratitude is defined as “the feeling or quality of being thankful”. It is the acknowledgement and appreciation for what you already have.
We all experience those times when we feel anxious, overwhelmed or burnt out - right! Have you ever deliberately shifted your focus onto what you feel grateful for? And felt it immediately lift you, lighten you? Even if only a little at first.
There is no right or wrong thing to be grateful for, it can be the big things; love, nature, seasons, family, friends. It can be the not so obvious things; time for that coffee in the morning, that stranger who held the door for you, smiling at someone and seeing them smile back, hearing the birds in the morning. When we pause to be grateful, all of a sudden we come into a true sense of abundance.
“Studies show that gratitude not only can be deliberately cultivated but can increase levels of well-being and happiness among those who do cultivate it. In addition, grateful thinking, and especially expression of it to others, is associated with increased levels of energy, optimism, and empathy.” “Further, the beneficial effects snowball over time. Brain scans of people assigned a task that stimulates expression of gratitude show lasting changes in the prefrontal cortex that heighten sensitivity to future experiences of gratitude. The emotion literally pays itself forward.” 1
I feel truly grateful each and every time I come to class and practice with you all. I feel grateful and honoured to be sharing an ancient science that offers so many gifts. I am grateful to each and every one of you, with all my heart, just because you are you.