Ever get angry? Frustrated? Disappointed? Discouraged?
Ever doubt yourself or others?
Yep. Thought so. You’re human! 😉
What you need is an emotional upgrade. A tool to help you deal with that stuff quickly, effectively, and easily. The secret sauce to quickly shift your thoughts, emotions, and energy, so you can get back to doing the awesome things you want to do.
The Secret Sauce: Gratitude
Okay, I suspect you were expecting love to be the secret sauce. Love and a relationship with God.
Those ARE at the core of the secret sauce. You have to love yourself and others, and you have to connect with God and have Him at the center.
But how do you DO that, exactly? I mean, we talk about love and loving, but what does that look like?
You need a tool you can implement.
Now you’re asking, “How do I do gratitude?”
When you use a tool to help you focus on what you are grateful for, you shift your perspective, your energy, and your emotions. Fast.
Hence the power of gratitude. Because when you follow the tool below, great things can happen.
So What’s so Great about Gratitude?
- disappointment, doubt, discouragement
- low self-esteem, sorrow, anxiety.
And when we include God in the narrative, things improve emotionally at an exponential rate. Gratitude toward God our Heavenly Father for our gifts, our blessings, realigns our perceptions and changes our experience.
Now, you might be thinking, “Why not just focus on love?” Well, when you’re feeling really frustrated or fearful, especially about things or people you really care about, it can be hard to quickly shift your thinking all the way to love.
It’s a lot easier to shift to gratitude about simple things. Gratitude is gentle, simple, and doable.
When you choose to think a grateful thought and consider the blessings in your life, you begin in a gentle way to move your mind away from negative thoughts and energy. You start slow, and slowly build.
As you dive deeper on a specific topic, you start to see marvelous things you never noticed before as gratitude changes your perceptions.
There are so many things that gratitude transforms:
- Sadness into contentment
- Loneliness into connection
- Anger into forgiveness
- Disappointment into acceptance and then generosity
- Hurt into happy
How Gratitude Changed My Marriage
Let me share with you a little personal story to illustrate this awesome tool.
There have been times in my marriage when my wife and I both were so frustrated and disappointed, even mad, that we thought about giving up. But we didn’t. In fact, our marriage has become awesome. Are we still intense? Yes. Ha! And we have hiccups. But we also have amazing tools to work through those and keep elevating our relationship.
Learning gratitude, and using this gratitude tool, has been one of the most effective things we’ve done not just to save our marriage, but to make it awesome.
This is how it works. Imagine me coaching myself and asking what I’m grateful for about her.
Start with General Gratitude
So, what are you grateful for?
“Well, the house is still standing. I have all my arms and legs. And I’m still breathing.”
Not great, but that’s a start.
“We have running water. And a warm bed to sleep in.”
Excellent. Feeling things shift?
What else are you grateful for?
“My job. My dog. Wish I had a better car, though.”
Oops. You were doing great, then that last bit about the car…
“Oh. Yeah. Okay, I’m grateful I have a car. Life would be really tough without one where I live.”
Slowly Transition to the Trigger Topic
Good catch. Ready to think about your wife?
“She made dinner last night.”
Okay, recognizing services is good.
“But I didn’t like it…”
No, don’t go there. Stay purely in gratitude mode.
“Okay, I didn’t eat dinner, but she didn’t say anything about it. She let it go.”
Nice rephrasing and shifting perspective. Feels better, doesn’t it.
“Yes. And we had fun on a date a few weeks ago.”
Still setting limitations, but now we’re starting to see activities relating to connections.
“When the kids were in a tussle, she parented that really well.”
Keep going. Just list a few, rapid fire.
List Simple Things Rapid Fire
Silence. Then finally,
“She got the kids ready for school.”
“And she taught the class at the co-op and did an amazing job.”
“And she helped the kids get their chores done.”
Okay, let’s upgrade gratitude to what you love about her.
“She’s smart and vivacious. And thinks really fast. Sometimes that frustrates me, but most of the time it’s an amazing counterpart to me. We laugh a lot, and I love her laugh and smile.”
So what are you grateful for?
“Her smile. Her laughter. And how quick she is. I’m very grateful for that. And for her.”
Now the energy has shifted entirely. And you’re thinking is gentle, balanced, and Christlike. How do you feel?
“Hopeful. And happier. Thank you!”
Start by Asking, “What Am I Grateful for?”
If that case study seems too simple, try it out. Start by asking yourself, “What am I grateful for?” Don’t focus on the immediate issue at hand. Trick your mind by starting with other things that seem unrelated.
In my experience, trying to focus too quickly on the issue at hand, such as your spouse or the trigger that led you to break your goal will, more often than not, backfire. This is true with any frustration.
Keep Asking Questions until You Feel Your Mood Shift
Don’t stop after a few answers. Keep going until you really feel the shift.
If you stop after just listing a few things, you won’t really change. But if you follow gratitude to flow, it opens your mind to other ways of thinking and acting. New behaviors, new interactions, and positive perspective. And that means real change is actually occurring. Staying in a mindset of gratitude is a powerful antidote to just about any ailment.
When you choose to see what you’re grateful for, you choose NOT to see the negative stuff. That elevates your energy levels, your sense of capability, your sense of compassion, and your desire to do and to build and to serve.
Those are pretty awesome traits. And they very quickly allow you to heal.
So start practicing the gratitude tool. You’ll be amazed at how powerfully it improves your life.
PS: If you’re ready to gain vision on your goals, clarity on the obstacles that get in your way, and create an effective strategy that will move you forward, read my post, “How to Achieve Your Goals (in 4 Simple Steps)“, then download my Success Staircase and Framework (the link is on the page). It’s a clear, holistic, and effective strategy you can start—today!
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