#6 Keep a Gratitude List

June 21, 2012

The Gratitude List:

A beneficial part of recovery is to make a gratitude list of things that happened during the day for which you are thankful. Research has shown that people who are grateful recover and remain healthy better than people who are negative.   Thoughts are energy and they have a powerful effect on your immune system and your overall health.  So being grateful is one of the ways to keep your thoughts healthy.  Sometimes it may seem difficult to find things for which to be thankful, but if you pause and really focus your mind, you can do so.  Taking a walk in Nature helps.  Begin to appreciate the beauty of creation, the positive changes you are making in your life; affirm that you now approve and accept yourself just the way you are.  Keep at it!

I do not want you to make your gratitude list like this (although that is how you may be tempted to begin):
1) my family
2) my friends
3) my job
4) recovery
5) my dog, etc.

If you do the list in this way, you will have difficulty finding more and more things for which to be thankful. Instead, be mindful and begin to notice seemingly small things for which to be thankful. For example:

1) The sweet way my partner smiles at me and touches my hand.
2) The lovely birdsong I heard as I was getting out of my car this morning.
3) The beauty of the sunrise (or sunset) as I drove to and from work.
4) The rich aroma of the coffee as I woke up this morning.
5) The trust my sponsee has in me.

Do you see the difference? The world is full of wonderful things for which to be thankful (including little things about yourself). Name them!