I found that my mindset has become more negative than I would like. In order to bring my brain back to a positive place, I decided to start practicing more gratitude in my life. Gratitude has been proven scientifically and spiritually to change the mind and soul.
There is an abundance of studies and articles on the benefits of gratitude. This Time article gives a wonderful summary of some of the physical and mental benefits of being thankful.
“Gratitude can make you more patient…improve self-care…help you sleep…stop you from overeating…help ease depression…Gratitude gives you happiness that lasts.” – JAMIE DUCHARME, 7 Surprising Health Benefits of Gratitude
Almost all religions agree that gratefulness is important in spirituality. Christianity points to gratitude as a pathway to genuine joy.
“Joy is the realest reality, the fullest life, and joy is always given, never grasped. God gives gifts and I give thanks and I unwrap the gift given: joy.”
― Ann Voskamp,
A big thank you to the gratitude journal prompts from Text My Journal that I used for my 30 days of gratitude.
1) What smell are you grateful for today?
I am grateful for the smell of the pool and sunscreen.
I love the feeling of the heat on my skin, the feeling of life flowing through me. When I jump in the pool, that pleasant, cold shock and the feeling of weightlessness gives me a joy like no other as my nerves, for this short while, stop their incessant screaming. I love to hear the laughter and joyful squeals of children at the pool. Looking around I see my fellow introverts holding their books, immersed in another world. There is a feeling of restfulness and peace unlike any other.
I am grateful for the smell of tea.
The aroma wafting in the air, tantalizing taste buds, promising of deep conversations, and providing a reason for needed stillness. My two favorite teas come to mind, Lipton Herbal Stress Less Tea (affiliate link) with its light lavender smell like a soft, cool pillow and Night of the Iguana Chocolate Chai from Cafe Intermezzo with its spicy, exotic, dark tones promising adventure. When I think of tea, I think of an island of calm in the midst of stress. I hear the low speech of confidential conversation and the high pitched laughter from a well-told story. Beautiful teacups and varied patterns. Antiques mixed in with the shiny and new.
I am grateful for the smell of books.
Old and new. I remember walking into an old bookstore, marveling at the cracked spines obliterating the original tiles, turning the pages as brittle as old bones. Walking into Barnes and Noble, I run to the new releases, marveling at the pristine hardcovers that make a small cracking noise as I open them. The pages are clean white with perfect rows of black lettering. The smell reminds me of worlds traveled, minds understood, and knowledge learned.