We have one week left in the month-long #gratitudewithdrallison challenge, and I have to say that it has been SO AWESOME to see so many people participating! Naming three new things to be grateful for each day is challenging at first, but hopefully at three weeks in, you’re starting to notice a shift. Hopefully you’re finding that it is a little bit easier to find small moments, small successes, or small sources of joy to acknowledge. This isn’t to say that practicing gratitude is easy, but like any habit or skill, the more you practice, the more natural it becomes.
With a week left in the challenge, and with so many people participating, I thought I’d throw in an extra little challenge. One of the keys to practicing gratitude is noticing the small stuff, and when I say small, I mean tiny/minuscule small. This can sometimes be tricky, because these are things that most of us are so used to overlooking, that we don’t even notice these moments. So here is a trick to training your brain to notice tiny, seemingly unimportant sources of gratitude.
Challenge yourself to name three new things for which you can be grateful for in the last hour. Yes, you read that right. Three new things from the last hour. Now before you pass out or shout out a “whhaaat?” hear me out. By challenging your brain to focus on such a short time frame, you are challenging your brain to notice these small, almost insignificant things that I’m talking about.
Here are examples from two hour-long periods in my morning.
4:30 – 5:30 am: I’m grateful that I didn’t hit snooze at 4:30 am, when my alarm went off. I was able to get up and get ready for my morning workout without feeling rushed. I’m grateful that the studio was warm this morning. Sometimes it’s chilly, but this morning, it was the perfect temperature, making it easier to get going. I’m grateful for the remixed version of one of my favorite jams that came on when I was debating whether or note I could keep up my pace on the treadmill. It pumped me up and kept me going.
7:00 – 8:00 am: I’m grateful that I tackled the dishes as soon as I got home from the gym, starting the week off fresh. I’m grateful the blueberries were already washed, making them easy to pack for lunch. I’m grateful I was able to improvise when we were out of a certain ingredient for my lunch, keeping my cool and the yummy taste of a go-to recipe.
By focusing on such a narrow window when naming my three new things, I’m challenging my brain to scan and search for an even smaller things. Are these things earth shattering? Of course not. But do they strengthen my gratitude muscle and help me see the good more frequently? Absolutely.
If you’ve been practicing gratitude by naming three new things for which to be grateful over the last several weeks, I’m sending a long distance fist bump your way. You rock. If you’re up for helping your brain scan for even smaller moments and sources of gratitude, I challenge you to stop yourself at some point in the day and ask, “What three new things from the last hour can I be grateful for?” My guess is it will be tough at first, but if you stick with it, you’ll be amazed at the good things all throughout your day.