A cup of coffee and a gorgeous mountain sunrise

How to Practice Gratitude: 12 Practices to Kickstart Your Day

Have you ever started your day feeling overwhelmed or stressed, only to find these feelings casting a shadow over the rest of your day? We’ve all been there, haven’t we? The good news is, there’s a simple yet powerful practice that can help transform your mornings.

What is this simple practice? It’s none other than gratitude. Notice how when you start your morning off right, it sets the tone for the entire day? Gratitude has the power to be transformative!

Woman enjoying a morning cup of coffee - how to practice gratitude

Gratitude, defined simply, is the act of appreciating the good things in our lives. These good things could range from the grand and obvious, like a promotion at work, to the subtle and often overlooked, like a warm cup of coffee on a chilly morning. We live in a fast-paced world. And taking a just a moment to acknowledge and appreciate the positive things in life can have a profound impact on your overall well-being.

Science backs this up too. Various studies have linked the practice of gratitude to increased happiness, improved health, and a sense of contentment. But how does one weave this practice into their daily routine? More specifically, how can you start your day with a healthy dose of gratitude?

It’s not as hard as you think. Here, I’ll be exploring 12 simple yet effective ways to practice gratitude every morning. Each method is designed to be easy to adopt, requiring minimal time yet promising maximum benefits. So, whether you’re a busy professional, a stay-at-home parent, or a student juggling multiple responsibilities, there’s a gratitude practice for you.

Let’s dive in, shall we? Prepare to transform your mornings and empower your days with the incredible power of gratitude.

Woman waking up and stretching in the sunshine - waking up to gratitude

The Importance of Starting Your Day with Gratitude

Good morning, sunshine! Or should we say, good morning, gratitude?

You see, mornings are more than just the start of a new day; they’re a fresh slate, a chance to set the tone for the hours to follow. How we begin our mornings can significantly influence our mood, productivity, and overall outlook for the rest of the day. This is where gratitude comes into play.

Have you ever noticed how a single negative thought in the morning can spiral into a day filled with negativity? On the flip side, starting your day on a positive note can help you keep a more optimistic perspective throughout the day – even when things get tough. This is precisely what practicing gratitude in the morning can do for you.

sitting on the dock with the sunrise rising over water in the morning

Practicing Gratitude in the Morning

By consciously acknowledging and appreciating the good things in your life first thing in the morning, you’re setting a positive tone for the day. This positivity is like a snowball rolling down a hill, gaining momentum as the day goes on.

But don’t just take my word for it – science has my back on this. Numerous studies have shown that those who practice gratitude regularly tend to experience less stress and depression. They also tend to have higher levels of self-esteem, and overall, a better quality of life. And when you start your day with gratitude, these benefits are amplified because you’re actively choosing positivity from the moment you wake up.

By integrating gratitude into your morning routine, you’re not just boosting your day, but you’re also enriching your life. It’s like giving yourself a daily gift of joy, and who doesn’t want that?

Next, I’ll share 12 easy, practical ways to include gratitude in your morning routine. They’re simple enough for anyone to try, but powerful enough to create a significant shift in your life. Ready to embrace the morning with a grateful heart? Let’s go!

grateful woman in a field of yellow flowers with arms uplifted

The 12 Simple Ways to Practice Gratitude Every Morning

Are you ready to transform your mornings and elevate your days? Here are 12 simple yet impactful ways to practice gratitude every morning. Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all approach to gratitude. Feel free to experiment and find the practices that resonate most with you.

#1 Keeping a Gratitude Journal

Start your day by jotting down three things you’re grateful for. They can be as significant as a loved one or as simple as the fresh morning air. This practice shifts your focus towards positivity and can set a joyful tone for your day.

Get your FREE Printable Gratitude Journal now! Use your best email in the form below to download our copy today.

Morning reflection on a hill overlooking the city to practice gratitude

#2 Gratitude Meditation

Begin your morning with a short meditation focusing on gratitude. Close your eyes, breathe deeply, and mentally express thanks for the blessings in your life. This can help cultivate a peaceful and grateful mindset.

#3 Expressing Gratitude to Loved Ones

Send a quick text or make a brief call expressing your appreciation to someone you love. You’ll not only experience a boost in your mood, but you’ll also strengthen your personal relationships.

#4 Gratitude Affirmations

Affirmations are positive statements that can help overcome negative thoughts. Start your day by saying out loud or writing down gratitude affirmations like, “I am thankful for the abundance in my life.”

#5 Visualizing Gratitude

Close your eyes and visualize the things you’re grateful for. This can deepen your sense of appreciation and make your gratitude more tangible.

#6 Gratitude Walks

Take a short walk in the morning, focusing on the things you’re grateful for—like the beauty of nature, the peaceful early morning, or your body’s ability to move and experience the world.

Writing "thank you" letters as an act of gratitude

#7 Gratitude Letters

Write a letter expressing your gratitude to someone who’s made a difference in your life. You don’t have to send if you don’t want to. You can simply keep it as a reminder of the kindness you’ve experienced. Because despite what the news will have you believe, there IS goodness in the world.

#8 Acknowledging the Good in the ‘Bad’

Every day is not unicorns and rainbows, but there’s usually a silver lining if you look for it. Look for something to be grateful for, even on those crappy, challenging days.

Gratitude for a good breakfast

#9 Practicing Mindful Eating with Gratitude

As you have your breakfast, take a moment to appreciate the food, the people who made it possible for you to have this meal, and your body that will utilize it for energy.

#10 Gratitude Reminders

Set reminders on your phone or post-it notes around your house with messages of gratitude. These can serve as prompts to maintain a grateful mindset throughout the day.

#11 Creating a Gratitude Jar

Start a gratitude jar where you jot down one thing you’re grateful for each morning and drop it in. Over time, you’ll have a tangible representation of all the good in your life.

Saying "thank you" more often for gratitude

#12 Saying Thank You More Often

“Thank you.” It’s amazing that such a short phrase can say so much. Don’t be stingy with your “thank you’s.” Say it more often. Don’t just thank others – make a point of acknowledging yourself for your efforts and achievements, too.

And there you have it! Twelve simple yet powerful ways to infuse your mornings with gratitude. Remember, the goal is not to do all of these at once. Pick one or two that resonate with you and gradually incorporate more as you go along. It’s about progress, not perfection.

My day begins and ends with gratitude.

Making Gratitude a Habit

So, you’re all set with a variety of gratitude practices to try. But how do you make these practices stick? How do you transform gratitude from a one-time act into a daily habit? Here are a few tips to help you make gratitude an integral part of your morning routine.

Consistency is Key:

The secret to forming any new habit is consistency. Try to practice gratitude at the same time every morning. This will help to integrate the practice into your routine, making it feel less like an additional task and more like a natural part of your day.

Start Small:

You don’t have to start with all 12 practices. Begin with one or two that resonate with you the most. As you become comfortable, you can gradually incorporate more practices into your routine.

Make it Personal:

Remember, your gratitude practice should feel meaningful to you. If writing doesn’t appeal to you, maybe a gratitude meditation will. If you’re a visual person, perhaps a gratitude jar or visualization techniques will work best. Tailor your practice to your preferences.

Be Patient:

Remember, you’re aiming for a change in mindset, and that doesn’t happen overnight. It’s perfectly okay if you don’t feel a dramatic shift immediately. Be patient with yourself and give your gratitude practice time to work its magic.

Embrace the Challenges:

You might encounter days where finding something to be grateful for feels like climbing Mount Everest. Don’t be disheartened. It’s normal. On such days, appreciate the simple things – the sun in the sky, the air in your lungs, or the bed you slept in. Gratitude can be found in the smallest details.

Now, you’re not just equipped with tools for practicing gratitude. You also have the strategies to make it a consistent practice. Remember, the goal is to make gratitude a habit, not a chore.

woman sitting on beach - simple gratitude

The Simplicity of Gratitude

Isn’t it amazing how the simple act of morning gratitude can have such a powerful impact on your life?

The beauty of gratitude lies in its simplicity. It doesn’t demand grand gestures or significant life changes. All it asks for is a moment of your time each day, a moment to shift your focus from the worries and stress to the blessings and positivity that coexist in your life.

Remember, practicing gratitude is not about ignoring life’s challenges or pretending everything is perfect. It’s about shifting our focus to appreciate the good, even in the midst of difficulties. It’s about learning to dance in the rain rather than waiting for the storm to pass.

the gratitude journey

The Gratitude Journey

So, as you embark on your gratitude journey, remember to be kind to yourself. It’s okay if some days are harder than others. It’s okay if you forget to practice gratitude some mornings. We’re human, and life happens. The key is to keep trying, keep appreciating, and keep moving forward with a grateful heart.

As you start your day tomorrow, try out one of these gratitude practices. Notice how it makes you feel. Notice how it changes your perspective. And most importantly, notice how it transforms your day.

I wish you an amazing journey filled with appreciation, positivity, and joy. Here’s to brighter mornings and happier days, thanks to the power of gratitude. Stay grateful, stay positive, and keep shining!

Cultivate Gratitude Challenge

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  1. It is true – gratitude makes our lives so much better. Your post is a great reminder of that, and the points you mention create a helpful list to follow and improve being grateful. Thanks for sharing those! It’s hard to believe, but for me (and I guess for other people as well), it happens to forget to practice gratitude. Having a reminder is really useful.

  2. I love this!! I have been trying to express more gratitude in my life. Sometimes it’s hard to remember, but it definitely helps me clear out negativity and remember how blessed I am!

  3. A symphony of gratitude beautifully composed! “How to Practice Gratitude: 12 Practices to Kickstart Your Day” is a soul-nourishing guide that leads us into a harmonious morning routine. The article weaves a tapestry of techniques, inviting us to embrace gratitude as a daily ritual. With each practice, it becomes evident that gratitude isn’t just a sentiment; it’s a transformative force that colors our days in vibrant hues. Here’s to waking up with a heart full of appreciation and embarking on a journey of abundant positivity – a resounding applause for this inspiring masterpiece!

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