Although the Thanksgiving holiday was meant to point our hearts toward gratitude, sometimes it becomes easy to take our blessings in stride. There are some little habits that we can pick up in order to change our mindset and learn how to be grateful each and every day!
It’s true – we can actually uplift our mood simply by counting our blessings … some days, this is easier to do than others.
I recently read a terrific article that encouraged developing a new habit to boost your gratitude. On those rough days, you may want to implement a practice of inserting an “at least” statement instead of spouting off or letting the troubles get you down.
The writer of the article changes her mindset by being grateful when worse things don’t happen. Sounds a bit convoluted? She thinks of an “at least” statement any time something happens to disrupt her life.
There’s a blackout while I’m in the basement of my house. At least it didn’t happen when I was cleaning the cats’ litter box, I tell myself. Next morning, I spill coffee all over the kitchen counter. At least it didn’t go in the silverware drawer. Then it’s on to bonking my hip on a table (at least I didn’t cut myself), burning the breakfast sausages (at least the kitchen didn’t catch fire), and buying $150 worth of groceries (at least it was cheaper than buying those same groceries in Tokyo). And so on, every day.
Not a bad way to try to gain perspective.
Here’s another good habit to develop. I recall after my brother’s family took a trip to India to visit the child they sponsor through Compassion International, their viewpoint was drastically different. When annoyances and disruptions would occur, instead of dramatizing the situation, they would say to themselves: “That’s a first world problem.”
Most people reading this message likely live in a home with running water, working plumbing, and something in the refrigerator. When struggles come our way, it would do our heart good to remember those who are living with third world problems – the likes of which we cannot even begin to imagine.
Of course there’s an oil for that…
I first experienced the essential oil blend called Gratitude when I purchased it to share around our family’s Thanksgiving table in 2013. Gratitude™ is a soothing blend of therapeutic-grade essential oils designed to elevate the spirit, calm emotions, and bring relief to the body while helping to foster a grateful attitude.
If you need to boost your mood and recognize all there is to be thankful for in your life, reach for an uplifting essential oil like Gratitude. Diffusing these oils can uplift your spirits and those who are with you, too.
However, I find to directly inhale deeply from the palms of my hands is the most beneficial way to use uplifting essential oils.
In addition to Gratitude, other good choices include Gathering, Frankincense, Stress Away, or Peace & Calming.
One more habit…
Learn to take deep breaths daily. The advice “take a deep breath” may seem cliché, but it holds true when it comes to stress and dealing with issues that arise to disrupt our lives.
Deep breathing brings you back into focus and it brings the body back into balance. Think about when a young child is upset and a mother tells him to take a few deep breaths. After three or four deep breaths, the child calms down. There is science and physiology that point to deep breathing as a remedy for stress.
Were you aware the military actually uses controlled and deep breathing to help a person regulate fear responses? If it works in an urgent warfare situation to keep a person calm, think of the benefits of deep breathing in life’s ups and downs.
While shallow breathing causes stress, deep breathing oxygenates your blood, helps center your body, and clears your mind.
Here is a simple exercise I try to do at least once every morning … and on stressful days 2 or 3 times more throughout the course of the day. Naturally, I always use an essential oil while I practice my deep breathing.
I pray you are reminded of all there is to be grateful for this Thanksgiving!