Stop. Stop what you’re doing and take a look around. Are you sitting at work, at home, in a coffee shop? Wherever you are just – pause. Pause, and take in one thing from this moment that you can be grateful for.
We often take for granted the beauty that surrounds us in every moment of every day. We don’t notice the little things that make the world go round, that wake us up in the morning, that have lead us to this exact moment – right here and now.
While practicing gratitude we need to be self-aware in the purest form (something that we are going to focus on for the next few weeks). We can never be fully aware in every moment, or else we wouldn’t get anything accomplished aside from just simply being. However, what we can do is pause throughout the day and take in what is happening around us and relate that to how we are feeling in that moment. Starting with this practice will help us on our journey to becoming self-aware to our fullest potential.
Going back to how we feel in a moment – this is HUGE in self-awareness. This is where we notice that something might be making us feel negative emotions – we take those emotions, reflect on them, and turn them around. Where we notice that we are letting our surroundings influence how we feel. Where instead, we should be focusing on how our feelings can better influence our surroundings.
For the purpose of this discussion – let’s say that we are sitting next to someone that maybe isn’t in the best of moods. They just got in a fight with their significant other, they just received bad news, whatever it may be – the emotions that this person is feeling will most likely rub off onto us, and start to make us feel a similar way. This is where we can become self-aware in the moment – take this feeling of negativity – internalize it – recognize this feeling – and start to turn that feeling around. Be grateful that you recognize these emotions and start to focus your energy on the positive that you can take out of the moment. Maybe you look to this person and just simply say to them “Hey! Love your shirt!” This right here – this simple act of kindness – can potentially help them turn their emotions around to make the remainder of their day better than it is in this moment right now.
Having a positive impact on someone, no matter how small, is where we can start to bring our practice of becoming self-aware into our practice of gratitude. Maybe this person you were sitting next to cracked a small smile when you complimented their shirt. In that moment, with that small smile, you had an impact on their life. You made them feel internally thankful/happy during that split second of time. These seconds add up throughout our day and while reflecting back on these moments we realize that these are the small things in life that make the world go round. That wake us up in the morning. That have lead us to this exact moment – right here and now.
These are the moments that help us be eternally grateful.