Health and wellness expert Samara Zelniker shares some thoughts on mindfulness and gratitude with us below.
So you want the key to happiness? I want to share a practice that has helped me build a business, start community, feel at peace while moving to 3 cities in 3 years. Are you ready for it?
It’s found in this one simple word, gratitude.
We’ve all heard this word before, or been told in some way shape or form to count our blessings, give thanks and be grateful for what we have. I’m sure there are some eye rolls going on as you’re reading this and might be thinking that the secret to happiness is really in this one concept we’ve known about our whole lives?!
Ok ok, not much of a secret but developing a strong gratitude practice is literally one of the best superpowers we have in our tool box to keep us from feeling overwhelmed to our zone of genius. Gratitude can truly transform any situation from an ordeal to adventure. It alters our vibration and has the power to move us from negative energy to positive energy. It’s fast, effective and has been a common practice among the top leaders in the world.
Are you ready to embrace your own attitude of gratitude? Here are some strategies that I use that are infinitely helpful in my daily life.
- Gratitude Journal: Take a moment either first thing in the morning or just before bed to write out 10 things you are grateful for. This takes less than 5 minutes and will instantly put you in a better head space to either start your day off of zen you out with a smile before sleep. Taking stock of all the great things in your life is a great way to reflect, focus on the positive and honour the blessings you have. Feeling super grateful and have more than 10? Awesome! Write as many as you feel called to. You’ll be surprised how many great things are already in your life just waiting to be recognized.
- Letter of Gratitude: Write a hand written letter to someone you’ve never properly thanked. This can be recent or from a time in the past. Writing gratitudes for yourself is wonderful, but sharing it with others takes it to the next level! Hand deliver or send via snail mail to have a greater impact than emailing or texting your gratitudes.
- Turn everything into a gift: Life is always happening FOR you not TO you and turning everything into a gift is a great way to align with the belief. Instead of your normal morning coffee, think of the cup of java as a gift for you. Instead of a long commute, think of it as the gift of time to listen to an inspiring podcast, or sing along to your favourite song. The gift of laughter, the gift of a smile – the gifts are endless!
- Internal Gratitude: Showing gratitude and appreciation for the externals of your life is hugely important, but it is equally important to turn the gratitude inwards and tell yourself you are grateful for YOU. Practice looking in the mirror and saying “I’m so grateful for you,”. Saying it out loud and hearing it in your own voice will help you to solidify it internally and create a new neural pathway in your mind.
- Gratitude is Contagious: In neuroscience we learn that ‘what fires together, wires together’, meaning that when you focus on something you start to become more aware of it and therefore see it more often. So, if you choose to focus on the positive things in your life, your brain will naturally start to pick up on more things to be grateful for. The more you practice gratitude, new neural pathways will form in your brain, making the act of seeking of gratitude effortless.
So there you have it – my ‘secret’ practice to success. The more you practice it, the easier it gets.
Getting in touch & upcoming events:
June 2nd Retreat: I’m so excited to invite you to @mindfulnessmatters next one day urban retreat happening in LA on June 2nd! Space is a full day where you get to be taken care of and relax. You get to put your busy life on pause and connect with amazing people, have a transformational experience, and create the space you are craving. Every retreat has its own energy and is held in a new amazing location. You’ll do yoga, meditation, transformational coaching, eat delicious and healthy food, have conscious conversations, and get a bunch of dope swag. You absolutely deserve this! #spaceurbanretreat