Make the ordinary extraordinary

Make the ordinary extraordinary

Gratitude is an emotion not an activity we do with our heads. 

The magic of gratitude is that we find the ordinary extraordinary.

How we do this is by being present and seeing all that is before you and beneath you. This can be a beaten up sofa that holds memories of lots of laughter, cuddles, conversations and even maybe the start of an addition to the family. We can choose to see it as past it’s prime or we can view it with love that it holds so many memories.

If the kids have made a mess with their toys, we are grateful that we have the kids. We are grateful we had the means to buy the toys. We also have the gift of playing with them, observing them. We have the choice whether feeling abundant or irritated because of the untidiness. 

Make the ordinary extraordinary everyday and your life will become so awesome, it will be unrecognisable. 

If you want help to realise this, here’s an extract of the book Gratitude Prompts free

Ten obstacles to gratitude

Ten obstacles to gratitude

In the years that I have introduced gratitude into people’s lives, I’ve noticed there can be obstacles. If you naturally developed a gratitude practice, this may be news to you. 

I briefly set out the ten obstacles to gratitude:

1.  ENTITLEMENT 

Where there is entitlement, there’s a sense of self absorption that the person is owed, it is their right to have…. This shows up in how people behave when driving and at work to give two examples.

2.  VICTIMHOOD

Today more and more people regard themselves as victims. Feeling victimised has grown socially acceptable in recent years.

3.  RUGGED INDIVIDUALISM – “I can do it alone.”

This is about a mindset that is geared solely to personal achievement and soon loses track of the roles others played in shaping our success. 

4.  MATERIALISM

When we are motivated by what we can acquire or replace, we rob ourselves of the pleasure of all that we have already because there is always something more to get. Any sense of satisfaction is illusory to those consumed by materialism.

5.  TAKING IT FOR GRANTED

We are numb to all we have – the acts of kindness bestowed upon us and the innumerable invitations to gratitude that surround us. 

6.  MANIPULATION

People who manipulate are rarely able to give any type of gift, whether it be a present or compliment without strings attached. Manipulators ae only concerned with their welfare not ours.

7.  SUFFERING

This is both a rich source for deepening gratitude or poison undermining it. Often times, gratitude blooms from the barrenness of suffering. Suffering becomes a poison when the person loses sight of everything apart from the pain.

8.  AMNESIA

Gratitude is said to be the heart’s memory. Without it, our hearts would ache. When the memories of gratitude fades, the feeling of deprivation surges unimpeded. Amnesia is a breeding ground for sadness. Without gratitude, we are resigned to the feeling of isolation. 

9.  LACK OF REFLECTION

We live in an age of information overload and this robs us of ‘downtime.’ Time to be. Time to contemplate. To process. Time to listen to our intuition. 

10. NEGATIVE MOODS

When we are weighed down by sadness, preoccupied by envy, seized by anger, afflicted by guilt or dogged by any number of other negative feelings, we shut the door to gratitude. We become so self absorbed by our distress that we become stuck. We become seemingly imprisoned and unaware of the many invitations to be grateful. 

Gratitude serves as a helpful antidote to countering discord. 

Where there is unawareness of the obstacle or how to dismantle, it may be more expedient to enlist the help of a coach or counsellor. 

Most of these obstacles can be overcome by making a decision to become aware of all that is in front of you regardless of the quantity or quality. You can receive an extract of the book Gratitude Prompts to get you started  by clicking here.  

Gratitude is more than 5 a day

Gratitude is more than your 5 a day

 

Surely, there’s not much more to gratitude than writing five things, or even 3,  you are grateful for each day. That seems to be the standard advice and activity on the net.

Keeping a gratitude journal will certainly do something and it will do more if you write out each statement like this:

I am grateful for ……..

Even better, take it a step further, list 5 different things each day for 90 days and then you really start seeing some benefits. 

This is why there is a lot about gratitude bing powerful yet, there is a gap between this and experience. 

Don’t get me wrong. the five entries per day is a great place to start. It is the beginning. 

Gratitude, and I like to use appreciation as well, is more of an attitude or a lifestyle change than quickly filling in the 5 things before dropping off to sleep or start the morning rush. 

As you already know, making these sort of changes require a bit more application. 

Consider viewing every action through the lens of appreciation

To grasp gratitude, consider viewing every action through the lens of appreciation. This includes driving the car, being on social media, watching TV, spending time with family, dealing with customers, staff or even your boss. 

There’s a lot of science to show how we approach a situation has an impact on its outcome.

As you go about your day, pause and look around for what you can be grateful for. These can include the furniture, car, food, drink, colleagues, family, how you overcome adversity, how your life experiences so far has led you to be here, nature, your hobbies… the list is endless.

There is so much more to gratitude than your 5 a day. 

The benefits of practicing gratitude are that you become kinder, more generous, more favourable opportunities arrive and life becomes less of a struggle. We all want that, don’t we?

 

 

Savouring the first cup of coffee of the day

I love the smell of just poured coffee. I love the froth on top even though it’s black. I love how it sits patiently waiting for me to take the first sip. Whilst, at the same time, it beckons me to indulge. 

Ooh! I love how the first sip is a mix of froth and liquor, just enough to wet the lips and heighten anticipation for more. 

Sunrise on day 4 of the challenge

Whilst preparing for the next sip, I take in my surroundings. I am comfortable on the sofa, the birds add their chorus to the morning airwaves, even the chooks (hens) play a part. I feel the sun on my skin and it feels so warm; a warm embrace. I breathe in the rays slowly. The day is full of promise. I am open to all it has to offer and it sure feels good. 

Am I ready for the next sip?

This time it is two two sips and now the coffee wets mor of the inside of my mouth and it feels yum! The taste buds are engaged and excited to have more. How can i refuse?

As I reach for the cup, I appreciate my arm for its strength and scope of movement. I also appreciate the strength of my hand to pick up the cup even though the index finger is bandaged. How marvellous is our body?

Now, the coffee is a bit cooler, I am able to slurp two mouthfuls for the taste buds to savour. I love the cleanness of the the taste and the liquor not having any fat. I smile with each mouthful. The taste improves as the coffee cools. 

As I sit here listening to the birds and the rumblings of human activity, my mouth is alive with plump taste buds urging me to take more slurps. I smile as I love witnessing micro movements, micro desires that I may have missed unless sitting in the now. 

Delicious frothy black coffee

Ah! It feels good. The combination of the warmth of the sun on the outside with the warm of the brown nectar reaching my stomach. A warming glow starts. Just the thought brings more joy, more smiles. Wow! This is starting to be a heady combination of joy and physical warmth of both the inside and the skin. 

Time for another sip, erm mouthful! Ah! The coffee is now only slightly higher than body temperature. It feels more at one with me as I savour each drop along with the feelings or  euphoria. Now, to maintain this for the rest of the day. 

There’s now an eagerness to finish the cup in order to make a second one to in someway force the extension of this beautiful feeling and to catch the remaining moments of the sun streaming into my room. 

Let me know how you experience your first cup of coffee. 

 

Savouring, can’t be beat

30 Day Challenge for boosting my vibration

Who wants to have 30 days with no TV, with no unnecessary human contact and really getting in touch with your higher self?

Well, this is what I am going during November.

I am on Day 3 and will be posting most days during the challenge.

So far, it has been an awesome time. I haven’t missed watching TV as I have access to high vibe books on aubible, conversations on podcasts and viedoe on Youtube. The big thing though is to increase your relationship with your higher self. This is easiest when left alone together.

I have a journal where I record the Positive Aspects of life. Over the next 30 days, I will be writing in there as if I am sharing with another person. Wait! I am sharing with another person – my higher self! Already there have been so many aha! Moments and it is only day 3. I am really looking forward to the next 28 days. It is really going to be awesome.

Here is one entry in the journal:

I love waking up with the sun. It is so magical to start the day basking in the early morning sunshine. I felt so good upon waking that I made some unleavened bread dough before making coffee. I noticed how different the bread dough was this morning with the strong white flour, I had run out the last time. 

I love making unleavened bread

I bought coffee yesterday and made a cup. Ooh! It tasted great. It feels so good to be sitting in the lounge in dappled shade writing this as well as drinking my coffee. 

I am looking forward to doing this challenge and writing about it. I see the value of withdrawing from the current reality to create a stronger connection with source. And, even when experiencing contrast (feeling less good), I see it as such and letting it go. Just like I did yesterday when asked about Evie. I want to be able to talk and write about her without falling into contrast. 

I love sitting here in the sunshine. It feels so good. I can hear the lorikeets chatting in the plants. I can hear the whirr of the lift as people are starting their day. A new day. New possibilities. 

If you would like to follow along, please leave a comment. Anyway, I’d love to know how you feel about this post.

Lorikeet at the 30 day challenge

Feeling good in under 3 minutes

We know about gratitude. We are brought up to say ‘Thank you’ when receiving things that it becomes so ingrained, an automatic response. Is this what it’s all about?

Consider another perspective, humans can have a tendency to take all the good things for granted. Unless we remain open to all that is around us, we can take for granted someone bringing a drink for you; the sun shining; clouds giving rain so plants can grow, instead we can be consumed by what isn’t going to plan or the annoying habits of those around you.

How often have you brought your bad mood home with you? Whether it is irritation or annoyance that a meeting didn’t go as you would’ve liked, you open the door to a loving and joyful scene. Instead of relishing the moment, a grumble erupts and effectively bursts the joy and love from the smiling faces or even the wagging tails.

There are lots of ways to becoming present whether it’s adopting a mindful practice, starting the day with 20 minutes meditation, showing appreciation and a gratitude practice; they all work.

Though time can be an issue and that’s why I am recommending gratitude.  I extend gratitude into appreciation.

There is no better feeling than of appreciation for everything around; for being grateful for being grateful for all the experiences that brought us here to this moment.

I’ve found the easiest way to feel good is to see, I mean, really see, who and what is in front of you and show appreciation and gratitude.

It can be in the car driving the kids to school, and even though the morning can be stressful, you wouldn’t change it for another life.

watching the sunrise

It can be looking out the window and whatever your eyes can see, there is beauty. It’s a choice to see the good. Seeing the good connects us with our feelings of joy, love and appreciation. whilst in these feelings, we are aligned with who we are and can be. Ideas flow. Face smiles. eyes sparkle. Time slows down.

Even at traffic lights, see the flowers, birds, trees, sky and marvel at the amazing world we live. Make it something you do every time you stop. Notice how you feel. If you have passengers, invite them to join in.

When a sneaking little grumbling thought arrives, choose to see what is beautiful around you.

Leave a message on what happened when you slowed down and saw what is in front of you.

 

Appreciation and Gratitude

No one likes being taken for granted. It feels as like being a doormat, an ATM machine or an unpaid taxi driver. Yet, the demands for your time, money and skills become a drain. I am sure there are times in your life, dear reader, when some or all of these things have happened either as a giver or as a receiver. 

Taking people for granted can be a killer for the longevity of relationships whether at home or at work. There is a simple activity to reverse the trend. Simply, take a few minutes to show your appreciation.

Showing appreciation is delicious. Just thinking about it now fills me with joy. this is both showing and being shown appreciation. 

First all be present, if you want to start from now, watch what the significant person/persons do. And where it connects, express your appreciation for how they conduct themselves, how they helped someone, that they gave you a drink before you asked.

Saying these things show you are present and like having them around. 

Don’t under-estimate the small things. Actions taken like greasing the engine, they aren’t glamorous, they have to be done regularly otherwise the engine would seize. With appreciate, sure you can splash out and buy a gift, but this isn’t really necessary. 

When you appreciate someone, or something in nature, you are, in effect, saying thank you to them for being them. Like kindness, it is two way with the giver of an appreciation filled with gratitude as well as when receiving the smile and thanked. If the receiver doesn’t, then there is still the time of giving. 

I write about giving and receiving because there have been times in my life that being grateful for receiving a smile in recognition of my appreciation, act of kindness has really made a difference to me. It spurred me on when in a dark hole. 

Your situation may not be so dark, I hope not, so getting the thank you smile may not be as helpful. It doesn’t matter. Take what you want from this material. Providing you count your blessings daily, the days will sparkly and shine. 

I don’t want you to get the idea that you are only doing kindness and appreciation in order to receive a thanks. The thanks is a bonus.

 

appreciate nature