- Take responsibility for your ability to feel grateful now. Realize that nothing outside of you needs to change or be different for you to feel grateful.
- Have a mantra. Create the habit of repeating a word or phrase to say throughout the day to bring you into present moment awareness. “Be Here Now”, or “What is this?” or “This is my life, right here, right now.”
- Get out of your head and observe the world around you. Notice objects, shapes, colors, designs. Be aware how things reflect light, how they are constructed, how things wear down. Notice without judgment, only with perception.
- God is in the details. Take time to look closely and deeply into things. Feel the surface of something and get present to the textures and what that does for you (or not). Really look into peoples’ faces; notice eyes, hair, and how they use their hands.
- Listen fully and completely. Choose to just listen. Not defend or retort. Don’t miss what is being said because you are formulating what you are going to say. When listening to music, just sit and listen. Right now, what do you hear?
- Focus on something that brings you peace. Some people carry beads. Some listen to music. Some read. Playing music, walking, gardening, petting an animal, are all simple things. Powerful and easily done, they allow us to focus and become one with what we are doing.
- Take time for things. We have been hypnotized into believing we should cram as much as we can into each day. Productivity to achieve goals is a worthy aspiration, but taking on too much and running around all the time becomes a grind. Do less better.
- Be with nature.
- Expand your awareness. At any moment, try to get connected to what is within 50 feet of you. (You’re in a building.) Then go out 100 yards. (You’re in a neighborhood, complex, city block.) Expand your awareness to your city, state, part of the world. See yourself as part of a larger whole.
- Realize that it’s a process. It’s about the journey. Try to detach from results. They may or may not be important tomorrow or in a week or month. Instead, focus on how you are being, instead of what you are doing.
- Visual reminders. Flowers, statutes of holy beings, little signs. Look at them throughout the day and breathe and say thank you. These things have a tendency to become unnoticeable as part of the scenery so move them often.
- Just sit. Sit quietly. Don’t do anything. Eyes open or closed. Call it meditation or whatever. Be with yourself powerfully.
So much of living from gratitude comes from letting go of our ideas of how the world should be, ought to be, could be or how we would like it to be. Try to do this regularly for just a short period of time. The idea is to get to the point where you can say truthfully “It’s all good.”