One of the most important, effective, and impactful things you can do for your mental health takes no more than 7 minutes and costs approximately zero dollars.
No, it's not a facemask.
No, it's not a cup of tea.
(Although those things are great, too.)
It's a gratitude list — a handwritten list of 10 things that you are grateful for right now. They can be big or small, noble or vain. There should be no judgment against yourself for what comes up. It is merely an act of identifying what you are grateful for and taking pen to paper to write it out.
The act of doing this on a regular or daily basis is called a “gratitude practice.” Here is why it matters: practicing gratitude enhances optimism, and an optimistic outlook is significant in promoting one's happiness and overall well-being.
How to Do It
Every morning when you wake up (before you reach for your phone and scroll through stressful emails) take a comfortable seat and write out 10 things you're grateful for. It can be anything that comes to mind. Remember, no judgment, only compassion for yourself. You will feel the benefits almost immediately.
Do this every day for one week, and check-in with yourself after week one. Do you feel lighter, happier, less stressed? Has your outlook shifted? Keep it going for as long as you like — weeks, months, even years. A gratitude practice can be integrated into your meditation practice, and here at Cure, we believe gratitude is just as important.
Send Out Your Gratitude
You know what else feels amazing? Sending your gratitude out into the world. That friend or co-worker you keep citing in your gratitude lists? Write a handwritten letter expressing your gratitude and mail it to them. You will be floored by how impactful this is on both you and the recipient. Send out positivity and it will come back to you tenfold. And really, couldn't we all use a little extra appreciation?
Already have a similar practice? Share it in the comments, we would love to hear what you do!