Monday, January 19, 2009

A small daily change… A huge payoff

Sometime back (years, maybe) Oprah Winfrey mentioned using a gratitude journal. Every night she jots down something she’s grateful for. I always liked the idea, but never tried it. Until recently.

I started January 1. Each morning, I play soothing music. (Right now, the music is from Within, a CD composed and played by David Michael, a Celtic harpist.) I sit quietly for a minimum of ten minutes (I’m hyper; for me ten minutes is a lot!). I decide what I want to create for myself that day. I also read through inspirational quotes and think about them. I finish by jotting down three things for which I am grateful.

So far, the experience is good. Actually, better than good. The mental focus I gain from doing these things begins the day in a powerful way. I am focused and active instead of hazy and reactive, and ready to conquer any obstacles that crop up. A huge payoff for ten short minutes. Whenever I’m tempted to skip the exercise (hey, I’m human), I remember what I gain from it.

What about you? Do you pray, meditate or otherwise focus your life on a daily basis?

Eager to hear from you and grateful for each person reading this,


Gillian Layne said...

This sounds like a very positive and inexpensive way to improve our life! I'm very guilty of letting myself forget how lucky I am.

I do pray, and I love Psalms. But writing down gratitude lists is a great idea.

Sara said...

I have not done anything on a regular basis - but, I am most impressed by what you said about the music and keeping a graditude journal. I may have to try that - Of course sitting for any length of time is hard for me.

Ann Roth said...

Try it, Gillian, and let me know what happens! It doesn't have to be huge things. One of the things I'm grateful for today is my radiant heat heater, which helps heat my office.

Sara- Sitting for a long time is hard for me, too--except when I write. I sit for hours doing that. But focusing on gratitude and spiritual stuff is difficult. You might start with short amounts of time and see how it goes.

Anonymous said...

On days I come home stressed from work and my upper back is tense - I do yoga. It helps soothe me. Other times of the week I do some pilates-inspired cardio. I do pray every day - maybe not the conventional way - I give a shout out in the morning and on the way home from work sometimes. Being quiet is very good for the soul!

Ann Roth said...

Marcie- I love what you do. Yoga (I've only tried it a few times--hard! but good) and the shout. Very, very cool. thanks for sharing.