Thanksgiving is a holiday to remind us of all the abundance and beauty in our lives, our relationships, loved ones, animal companions, home, food, warmth and kindness that surround us. While it is a wonderful day to be grateful, I would like to encourage you to not only give thanks on Thanksgiving but to feel gratitude from your heart every day of your amazing life.
It’s important to remember that cultivating gratitude is a practice. It can be a little more challenging in the beginning and gets easier the more you practice. Eventually our neurological pathways change toward more positive patterns, helping us to perceive all our blessings more easily.
Practicing gratitude rewards us with fulfillment, happiness and abundance. When we focus on the good in our life, and fully appreciate our blessings, we attract more of those. Like the famous quote by James Redfield states “Where Attention goes Energy flows; Where Intention goes Energy flows.”
Are you ready to feel the power of gratitude? Allow me to take you through a short, guided meditation practice.
STEP 1: Find a space to sit or lie down where you will be undisturbed for a little while. Make yourself comfortable, close your eyes, and begin to take a few deep, steady breaths. Breathe all the way into your belly and let it rise and fall with every breath.
Soften your shoulders and relax your body. Take about 5 more breaths just like this.
STEP 2: Now bring your awareness to something or someone in your life that fills you with joy, excitement, and happiness. See every detail, take it all in. What sensations do you feel in your body? Where do you feel them? Does it have a temperature or a color? Just stay open to your experience and allow what is coming to you.
Let’s say you feel these sensations in your heart. Bring your full awareness to your heart.
STEP 3: Keeping your eyes closed, imagine a loved one in your mind’s eye or just silently repeat their name until you feel you can connect to them. Imagine that you are looking into their eyes. Now send your love and gratitude to them. Feel the sensations in your body as you send them all your love, appreciation, and gratitude. Now as you look into their eyes, feel and see their love and gratitude reflected back at you. Give yourself permission to receive. Continue to send and receive love and feel your heart and emotions expand.
With your heart is completely full and you feel complete, bring your loving awareness to yourself.
STEP 4: Begin to give gratitude to who you are, all the challenges that you have overcome, your unique talents and gifts, your courage and strength, your compassion, love, and kindness, your feet that take you where you want to go, dance, jump, run, and walk,your eyes that allow you to see the beauty around you, your heart that loves so deeply, your hands that touch, caress, applaud, create, and hold on to loved ones, your lips that kiss, smile, and communicate with love and kindness,embrace yourself for who you are, beyond all labels, interpretations, and perceptions, because you are unique, special and perfect just the way you are!
Take a moment to bring your awareness back to your heart center and feel the sensations that gratitude has created.
Acknowledge yourself for taking the time to focus on the blessings in your life. When you feel ready, gently open your eyes.