I don’t have to chase extraordinary moments to find happiness – it’s right in front of me if I’m paying attention and practicing gratitude. ~ Brené Brown
Many years ago, I was feeling very stressed out and was struggling to find any joy in my daily life. That year for Christmas, I got a new camera and so I decided that I would take a daily picture of something that made me smile. I LOVE those pictures now. I started out taking pictures of the obvious things – family, close friends, etc. But then I set up the rule that I couldn’t take a picture of the same thing, so everyday needed to be something new. Soon the pictures were of the less obvious things that made me smile for the day. I have a picture of the Clorox Wipes’ package because those make me smile and make cleaning easier. I have a picture of my pillow because the thing that made me smile that day was ending the day and getting to go to bed. I have a picture of an ice pack because I had sprained my ankle and the ice pack helped it to feel better. That daily practice changed my mood and it helped me to pay attention to the ordinary moments in life that bring me a moment of happiness.
I have continued the practice for years now – although sometimes not as consistently. I love finding something most days to take a picture of. This gratitude practice has been a way for me to literally see the world in a different way.
This week engage in a daily gratitude practice. If you can, take a picture everyday of something that you are grateful for or that makes you smile. If you don’t have easy access to a camera make a list at the end of the day of 3 things you are grateful for. And if you already have a gratitude practice, try a new practice. See the video below for a great idea of a gratitude practice that a young man did for a year.