It’s hard to believe that November is here already! At this time of year, I’m reminded of gratitude. The big G.

When I first began practicing gratitude it was very formal. At the end of my daily meditation practice, I would take a few moments to internally say thank you for all the blessings in my life. Sometimes I would list them off one by one, othertimes I would simply generate a feeling of deep gratitude.
Eventually this practice spilled over into my everyday. I found myself feeling grateful while looking at the ocean, checking out at the market or sharing a yoga class with my fellow yogis.

Gratitude began permeating my life.

Gratitude feels great. It connects us with our own heart and thus the heart of all things. We feel closer to others, to nature and to the universe itself.
Feeling grateful has enormous physiological benefits. In a study by Berkeley University of over one thousand people ages 8 to 80, the following benefits were reported from a regular practice of gratitude:


Stronger immune system
Lowers blood pressure
Less bothered by aches and pains
Longer sleep and feeing more refreshed upon waking
Exercise more and take better care of their health


More optimism and happiness
More joy and pleasure
More alert, alive and awake
Higher levels of positive emotion
More forgiving
More outgoing
More helpful, generous and compassionate
Feel less lonely and isolated

How to Practice Gratitude

Ready to start?

Practicing gratitude is simple but just like anything else you do in life, you need to create a habit in order to do it. Otherwise you’re likely to forget.

Here’s some ideas:

  • Bring Gratitude to Dinner
    At dinnertime, have every family member share three things they felt grateful for today. It’s a positive, meaningful dinner topic that certainly beats common controversial topics or arguments.

  • Have a Gratitude Challenge
    Think of it like working out with a friend. Work-outs are more fun, and often more effective with a friend, right? You get to work together for your common good.
    Same thing with gratitude only you’re addressing your health on another level. Choose someone you’re close with, and challenge yourselves to communicate one thing you’re grateful for every day.
  • Gratitude Before Bed
    Make gratitude a part of your nightly wind-down routine. Whether you take a bath, stretch, meditate or read a book, add on a few moments of gratitude at the end of your relaxing evening activity.
  • Turn Challenges into Rainbows
    My very wise Grandma taught me this lesson- any time difficulty arises in your life, be grateful. Be grateful for the opportunities for growth and knowledge that challenges provide. Remind yourself of all the blessings you do have.

What’s your way of practicing gratitude?

What changes do you notice in your body-mind- being when you give rise to gratitude?

I’d love to know!