This is a guest post, the second in the Gratitude Practice series. Every week, I’m posting a submitted article about the powerful practice of gratitude. You are invited! More details here.
Today I welcome Tat, who blogs about motherhood at Muminsearch.com
My gratitude practice wasn’t intended as such in the beginning. I had just started blogging. All my favorite bloggers were participating in a weekly Grateful linky at Maxabella loves… I thought it was fun and an easy way to promote my blog, so I joined, too.
At that time it was more about writing good, interesting posts and getting them out there. I could always twist a subject so that I was grateful for something. I’d write a post I would write anyway and then find a grateful angle to it. On the weeks that I couldn’t think of anything interesting to write about I didn’t participate.
After a couple of months I noticed a shift. I was looking forward to the weekend now and noticing all the things that I could be grateful for during the week, so that I could write about them. I was appreciating the world in a new way and coping with hard times was easier, because amidst gloom and doom there was always something I could be grateful for….Well, there was really no gloom and doom. I had a good life, but it was being grateful that made me realize it.
Now I’m committed to writing a weekly grateful post and it’s not about pleasing an audience anymore. Before publishing any other post I’d ask myself—what’s in it for my readers? And if I can’t answer, I won’t post it. But not the gratefuls. Every week I write about whatever I feel deeply grateful for, even if it seems like the most boring thing in the world. The grateful posts are for me.
When I saw how gratitude affected me in a positive way, I experimented with other gratitude practices, but none stuck. I had a daily journal for a while, in which I regularly forgot to write. I even tried an hourly gratitude practice for a day…it didn’t go very well. While it helped me notice and appreciate things that I wouldn’t have otherwise paid attention to, it also felt like a chore, and every time I missed the hour, I was slightly annoyed with myself for forgetting.
If I have to give one tip for a gratitude practice, it will be to try different things and pick what works for you. You can record your gratitude in a journal, take photos, write blog posts, send yourself (or a friend) emails… but it has to be right for you. Something that in itself makes you feel grateful, and is not just another thing to add to your never-ending to-do list.
I still participate in the weekly Grateful linky which has now moved to Village Voices. It’s on every Friday, but it doesn’t matter if you’re late—you have a week to link up your blog post. If you don’t have a blog you can update your Facebook status, tweet, link your Instagram photos or simply leave a comment. You’re welcome to join in!
About the author: Tat is a (mostly) stay-at-home mum of two and expecting her third child in October. She blogs at Mum in Search about finding yourself in motherhood through creativity, trusting your instincts and learning from your children.