The other morning, I woke up in a bad mood. I wondered if I’d had a nightmare. Nope, I couldn’t recall any. I hadn’t tossed and turned all night because of my husband’s freakishly loud snoring (thank you, industrial strength earplugs!). I hadn’t even checked my social media yet, so I hadn’t activated any self-sabotaging comparison triggers. I just opened my eyes that morning, and had a sense of foreboding. I simply felt like life wasn’t great, for no obvious reason at all.
Do you ever feel that way? Some people think of this as the yin and yang of life, the natural ups and downs of being human. But left unaddressed, it can ruin your day (or worse).
Taken from Tiny Buddha’s Gratitude Journal by Lori Deschene, here are some prompts to help you get out of a funk and get you back on track for living a “happier, brighter life”:
Ask yourself these questions:
- What’s the best thing that’s happened to me so far today, and what did I most appreciate about it?
Big or small… go! So far this morning, I’ve appreciated my workout, the fact that our house is still standing (and mostly intact save for some roof shingles), and my coaching business that I’m building every day. Not too bad!
- Which household items do I most appreciate and why?
I love my books, my patio, my pool, and my uber-comfortable bed. Look around you. What do you love?
- What do I most appreciate about my body and why?
Your strength? Your great hair? Your height? Your clear skin?
- What are some things that recently went right or better than expected?
Whether it was a tough conversation, a job interview, a Pilates class, or winged eyeliner—don’t discount the small stuff! A happy life is just string of many small, happy moments.
Finish these sentences:
- I’m grateful that I’m healthy enough to…
Travel? Work out? Volunteer at the local animal shelter? Help your neighbors clean up their yards after the hurricane?
- Though I may not be rich, I’m thankful I have enough money to…
Go to your favorite restaurant once a week? Visit your friend in another state? Live in your favorite city or neighborhood? Enjoy your gym membership?
- I appreciate that every day I get to…
This is a great one, because so many of us tend to take our blessings for granted. Kiss your spouse? Walk your dog? Do some yoga? Enjoy a great cup of coffee after getting your kids off to school?
- The best things in life are free, including…
My kitties’ unconditional love. The power of happy memories. The tree-lined sidewalks throughout my neighborhood. Walks on the beach. What comes to mind for you?
- I appreciate that tomorrow I’ll get to…
Have coffee at your desk? Skype your sister? Wear your new jacket? Walk to work on a sunny morning? Keep going with this one!
- I appreciate that I had the courage to…
This is my favorite! I listed: Take myself on a solo trip to Hawaii after I took the California Bar Exam. Start a business. Blog about my life with honesty and vulnerability. Ask people I respect and admire to come on my radio show. Ask my husband if we could adopt another kitty. Be myself!
What comes up for you when you finish these sentences and ask yourself these questions? You don’t need a bonus check, a text from an ex, or low number on the scale to feel a boost in your well-being. Happiness can mean accepting and enjoying exactly where you are right now. Put simply, it’s called appreciation!
Deschene states, “We need gratitude the most when we feel least able to access it.” Like when we wake up in a funk. And these great, small things are all true. What can you turn around with some truth today?