Identify the Challenges
Choose to identify any experiences that were challenging and see them as opportunities for learning and growth. These experiences do not define us, but have undoubtedly had an impact and affected us to some degree.
Spend Time in Reflection
After acknowledging these experiences, spend some quiet time in reflection and honor any emotions as they surface. Pay attention to bodily sensations as well. Write down your thoughts, feelings and emotions as you spend time in reflection if you are guided to do so.
Give Thanks for the Experience
When the time feels appropriate, express gratitude with sincerity for having the experiences. The Ho’oponopono prayer invites us to recognize and accept responsibility for internal aspects of ourselves as well as external situations that are beyond our control. This ancient Hawaiian practice will assist with clearing any residual energy from a challenging situation. Simply, state the following as a prayer or mantra: “I’m sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you.”
Recognize the Blessings
In addition to identifying the challenges, we can also recognize the blessings within our life and give thanks for all of our experiences even if they are different than what we had originally planned or are not really to our liking. When circumstances occur beyond our control, and they appear to be or feel less than desirable, we can choose to focus on the positive rather than the negative. Every experience lends itself to having another experience. Each day is a new beginning and an opportunity to have numerous experiences for personal growth and learning.
Create a Gratitude Journal
Journaling regularly, whether it be daily or as you feel led to do so, reminds us of the blessings we experience. Keep in mind that there is no right way or wrong way to journal – only your preferred way. Simply allow the words to flow.
Tools to Assist with Embracing an Attitude of Gratitude
From "Thanking 2020 as We Journey into 2021" (December 13, 2020)
By Shelly Wilson