The Gratitude Alarm

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When was the last time that you stopped to reflect on what you are grateful for?

For me, I have an alarm that goes off every day at 9pm and I share with the people around me three things that I’m grateful for from that day. If I’m alone, I’ll text my husband and if I’m able to, I’ll share those three things on my Instagram and Facebook story.

This has been a practice of mine for about three years and it’s now a daily ritual that I always look forward to.

Why is expressing gratitude so important?

A few years ago, I was given the gift of attending the Luxury Wellness Retreat with Catherine Rosco Barr, owner of The Life Delicious. I hopped in my car, drove to the ferry and spent the weekend learning all about how to live a healthier (and happier) life, at the Fairmont Empress Hotel in Victoria. Before attending this retreat, I was assigned a list of videos to watch and there was one that CHANGED MY LIFE.

Shawn Achor, Psychologist and best-selling author, specializes in studying the science of happiness. He shares that in only 21 days, certain exercises can help make you a happier person. In those 21 days you can begin to rewire your brain and specific habits will alter the neuropathways of your brain and will turn you into more optimistic human.

This video is what began my new journey to living a more positive life:

Shawn Achor’s TED Talk

One of my biggest takeaways is that 90% of your long-term happiness is predicted by the way your brain processes the world.

Who doesn’t want to live a more positive life, right?

Shawn believes that these six daily happiness exercises are proven to make you (and everyone) happier:

  1. Practicing Daily Gratitude: Write down three things you’re grateful for that happened over the last 24 hours. It can be something small like a cup of coffee or the warm sunshine on your face.
  2. Exercise: Do 15 minutes of fun cardio activity. Did you know that the effects of daily cardio can be as effective as taking an antidepressant? My therapist also feels this way.
  3. Meditation: Take two minutes to stop whatever you’re doing and meditate.
  4. Conscious act of kindness: Start the day off by spreading kindness to someone in your life. This can be a thank you or compliment text or a nice comment on social media. Our brains become hooked on feeling good by making others feel good.
  5. Journaling: Spend time each day writing down your thoughts and feelings plus include one positive experience form the past 24 hours. It feels really good to do this with a pen and paper and this way, it gives you a break from your screen.

The Daily Gratitude Alarm

I took the idea of the suggested gratitude exercise to heart. This practice goes with me on vacation, work trips, to the movie theaters (sorry, fellow moviegoers), events, work and anywhere else I may be in the evening. I’ve spread this practice to various people in my life and spreading happiness makes me feel even happier.

One of my gratitude posts to Instagram.

A few other things that I do on the list is making sure I always help people when they are holding a map and look confused, make time to spend with friends (which can be challenging due to my schedule), start each day with a fun workout, volunteer and try to always give back to my community. The I Am Resilient Project is a way for me to give back and help the other humans of this plant.

I’d love for you to share what you feel grateful for today. Drop your answers in the comments below and I’m grateful that you took the time to read this article.

Are you ready to share your story of RESILIENCE? You can do that HERE and thank you for being brave and sharing your journey.

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