Grow Your Attitude of Gratitude

A few days ago my daughter told me about accepting a “Thankfulness Challenge.” She’s posting tiny “I’m thankful for ...” statements on Facebook at least once a day. After she told me this, I took a look. The instructions are simple:

Every day this month until Thanksgiving, think of one thing that you are thankful for and post it as your status. "Today I am thankful for..." The longer you do it, the harder it gets! Now if you think you can do it then repost this message your status to invite others to take...the challenge, then post what YOU are thankful for today....

Then I checked her posts. They are tiny indeed. Typical ones include:

  • Today I am thankful for deodorant.
  • Today I am thankful for sarcasm.
  • Today I am thankful that others have louder voices than mine.
  • Today I am thankful for ear plugs ... helpful when the children are fighting over toys.
  • Today, I am thankful that my husband did not die on mile 24 of his marathon -- no matter how much he thought he was going to.
I am taking the challenge too, though I’m doing it via Twitter and somewhat behind.

Rather interestingly, as Susan told me about the challenge, she remarked that one of her friends thought she’d have trouble finding enough things to be thankful for. Part of Susan’s purpose is to demonstrate to that friend and the world that thankfulness/gratitude can become a frame of reference for viewing the world, and we can be thankful for tiny little things. We can be thankful several times a day. Several times an hour. Almost constantly in fact.

Recording gratitude is not a new idea. Information about Gratitude Journals abounds. explains: “A gratitude journal is like a diary - but you're only allowed to write positive things in it. ...“

The Happy Guy interviewed expert Doreene Clement for advice on how to keep a Gratitude Journal and posted her detailed instructions here.

Reviewing a Gratitude Journal, or even gratitude posts in a regular journal, can brighten dreery days and lift us out of the doldrums. Recording gratitude strengthens the habit of thinking that way. It can even improve your health! Sharing gratitude with others, especially in tiny, credibly little bites like Susan is doing, infects others with a grateful spirit. The more of us doing that, the sooner the whole world will be wrapped in Gratitude, and that has to be a powerful thing.

I’m grateful that my daughter is spreading gratitude, and I’m grateful to Google for making free blog space available to the world. And (drum roll) ... I'm thankful for those who read my blog!

Write now:
in the spirit of the season, make a list of things you are grateful for. Aim for at least a dozen off the top of your head, and look beyond the obvious. Make it a habit to jot down grateful thoughts at least once a day, and share them with the world at least now and then.


Karen Walker said...

I am thankful you came into my life, Sharon Lippincott.

Sharon Lippincott said...

And likewise Karen. You reminded me to add a line while the day is still current -- I'm thankful for all my blog readers!

Linda said...

I like the idea of trying to write down things we are thankful for once per day. I'll just bet that doing so will cause an attitude shift. Today, I am thankful for my granddaughter and grandson, and very thankful that I have been able to snuggle with both of them today!

Sharon Lippincott said...

Lovely Linda, and be grateful they live nearby for frequent snuggles. Or -- maybe the visit that brings them temporarily near.

This morning I'm grateful for the recycled paper pages of my journal.

Susan said...

I post thankfulness
because I took a challenge
thankful for haiku.

Sharon Lippincott said...

I'm thankful that you have the poetry (haiku) gene that I lack.

Susan said...

Love this idea, Sharon. Not so many days left, but maybe I'll go on past Thanksgiving Day itself. A delightful challenge. Thank you.

Sharon Lippincott said...

Susan, definitely, go on past Thanksgiving. The Challenge my Susan accepted was specifically about Thankfulness. In my mind, thankfulness and gratitude are synonyms, and Thanksgiving is only a day to remind those who aren't already "with the program." Gratitude is a rewarding way of thinking.

Sarah Allen said...

Thanks for this! This post is beautiful. It is always good to remember what we are grateful for. Your posts are beautiful, and I would love for you to check out my creative writing blog and see what you think. Thanks!

Sharon said...

Sharon, thanks for your visit and comments at my blog recently. I am bookmarking yours and will be back to visit again. Your posts are inspiring. As far as thankfulness is concerned, it's one of the ingredients most lacking in all of our lives in my opinion. How much easier it is to gripe and complain and see the negative rather than focusing on the positive. Today I'm thankful you found my blog and therefore I found yours!

Sharon Lippincott said...

Sarah, thanks for stopping by. You've got some great posts on your blog too. I hope everyone stops by for a look.

Sharon Lippincott said...

Sharon, a namesake. How is it that our name didn't catch on enough to have legions of little Sharons running around today? I'm thankful for the great example of positive acceptance you set in your blog and book.