Gratitude: see it, feel it, live it.

There are so many ways to capture your gratitude, but all that really matters is that you feel it and you notice the seemingly insignificant moments in your day that bring you joy.

In the past, I’ve used a diary to write 3 things every day that I was grateful for. This was a perfect way to establish a practice and make gratitude a part of my everyday. The sense of finishing the day with an appreciation for the day was also a lovely transition to sleep. However, over time, I felt restricted by the small space I had to write – some days the gratitude just wants to flow! Then, other days I would feel exhausted and my little book of gratitude became a ‘to-do’ when all my body wanted was to close its eyes and feel grateful for the land of sleep.

I now use a gratitude jar. I love this. I write things I’m grateful for on little pieces of coloured paper throughout the year, fold them up and drop them in the jar. Other family members add to the jar when they have a moment they want to capture – it’s an open-to-all, visual reminder of the appreciation we have for life. Then, on New Year’s Eve or New Year’s Day, I unfold them, read through them and stick them in a book. It’s an annual ritual that brings me to happy tears and reminds me how many magical moments I’ve experienced, how much joy I have in life and how lucky I am.

Even the darkest years have awe and beauty in them – you need the cracks for the light to shine through.

A random collection of 2021 gratitude jar moments:

  • An early morning run, the ground crisp, the sun shining, the deer in the fields.
  • A coffee waiting for me when I get out of the shower.
  • Friday morning kitchen disco with my miniature human.
  • Daffodils just beginning to open.
  • Looking at the house and seeing “mess”. My daughter telling me she sees “fun”. I have so much to re-learn from her.
  • Music, sound, silence.
  • Watching the playful innocence of childhood. Such joy.
  • Talking with my mum.
  • Feeding the birds.
  • Cuddles and snuggles with my daughter. The smell of her hair.
  • The sky and all its colours – so vast, changing, beautiful.
  • Family time without wifi, without phones, without technology… a day of play, simplicity, outdoors and no need to capture it on camera.
  • The way my daughter experiences emotions with her whole body – the jumping, the movement, the dancing, the joy! Again, I have so much to re-learn.
  • Family. Being together. Laughter.
  • Early mornings. My yoga mat. Space to breathe. And be.
  • Tough years. Stronger relationships.

Here’s to overflowing jars of gratitude in 2022…