We all know that Gratitude is something that we “should” practice in order to live a happier life. But, why? What happens in the body and mind when we practice gratitude and the act of being grateful?
I’ve realized a lot of “being grateful” comes from being without. It might sound like a cliché question, but do you truly know what you have until it’s gone? Once you miss something and realize its importance in your life, you become grateful for it. That feeling of gratitude helps to ground you, especially when you are always moving on with your busy life.
A personal example of gratitude in my life is our first pregnancy. After 15 weeks of being pregnant, my husband and I found out we miscarried. I remember gratitude was not even a word in my vocabulary. I went to the extreme of not being grateful for a thing: focusing on only the negative. This, not surprisingly, made my life more negative than before. I was envious of all the women I saw just being happy. What I realized was that my focus was only on myself. Our miscarriage did not just happen to me, it happened to our family. The situation affected everyone. When I took a step back and became grateful for my life, and everything I have- my relationships with my husband, family, and friends- it helped to strengthen all of my positive emotions. My body and mind became more open to all that I have in my life to be grateful for.
Something I learned after this was that both positivity and negativity feed off each other. In every situation, you choose the energy you put into the world. For example, once I started not being consumed with the negativity in my life, the storm blew away. After the storm, we were blessed with our rainbow baby, a boy we named Asher. Keeping in mind for every negative there is a positive, you just have to open your mind and be grateful for what you have. Don’t wait until you are without those precious things to recognize their importance to you.
Here are 3 ways to be more grateful and have gratitude in your everyday life:
- Start with being present.
- Make the time to be grateful – This might sound like the easiest, but when and how much time do you actually take to do this?
- Be social about your joy and sharing those moments!
Cassie Brumfield is the Trust and Marketing Development Associate at Richland Bank’s Investment and Trust Group. Cassie is proudly involved with the Richland Area Chamber of Commerce, Richland Young Professionals, Altrusa, and The Connections Fund. She and her husband, Zach, have a beautiful ten-month-old baby boy and they reside in Mansfield.