As November kicks off, so does my family's month of gratitude. Not a surprise as people across the country are doing similar acts for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, however my philosophy is a little different. When I was going to school for life-coaching, we had an entire week dedicated specifically to gratitude. Why? Because there is something magical about gratitude. Over the last few years I have come to realize how true this is. Just a little bit of gratitude, can create beautiful things.
From a spiritual perspective I've always known gratitude is good, but I didn't realize just how much it could create positive change in my life until I had to do it for classwork. My assignment was to write down at least one thing I'm grateful for each day for seven days. Always the skeptic, I saw it as a waste of time and ended up blowing off the assignment. However, I started reading about the positive changes my classmates were seeing in their lives after just one week and thought maybe there was something to it. I decided to give it a try. Each day for a week I wrote down one thing I was grateful for. At the end of the week I didn't notice anything major, but I felt lighter. At the time I was dealing with Post Partum Depression and anxiety so for me, feeling lighter was quite a positive change.
After that, I began writing a little more each day, until it turned into pages of things I was grateful for. The more I wrote, the more I was able to truly feel how utterly blessed I was in so many amazing ways. My heart began to open and so did my mind. The desperately hard parenting days were no longer a burden that weighed me down with fear and guilt. Instead, I was able to see them for what they were, just moments of emotional learning. Gratitude isn't the miracle drug that cures my woes, and it sure as heck doesn't help my kids behave. At least once a week I want to cry, scream or run away, but the more often I take time to write in my gratitude journal, the easier it is for me to laugh at the crazy ups and downs of parenting.
My nearly 3-year-old has a tantrum at least once a day. Yesterday it was because I tried to help her push in a cabinet drawer. The day before it was because I asked her to put on pants. I've noticed that the days I journal my gratitude I have a much greater ability to handle the meltdowns, and all the other things that arise in my life. I've also noticed that I am slower to blame. Gratitude has helped me take ownership of my faults and blame others less. It's also helped me connect to love, find greater patience, see the beauty in things, and live a more light-hearted life. This in itself is a miracle. Just one of the countless little miracles I have witnessed when I take the time to write down my gratitude. I know gratitude can create miracles, something I want my children to learn and always remember. This is why I dedicate November to gratitude.
If you would like to find out more about gratitude or starting a gratitude journal, follow me on Instagram at @babiesbusinessandbubbly. I will be posting daily about my November gratitude journey.