By Jeltje Kooistra – December 23, 2022
We are nearing the end of another year and I see articles appear about setting intentions for the new year. And unfortunately, most of these intentions fall very quickly by the wayside in early January. Very few of us put in the attention and action that are part of manifesting the intentions we set.
What works for me better is to start with showing gratitude for what I have experienced in this past year. What went well, what did I enjoy doing or achieving and what lessons did I learn from failed intentions. A grateful attitude lets you focus on what you feel went well and so it creates more of the same! Gratitude, being a feeling, has a magnetic quality and so will attract an even greater abundance of what you feel gratitude for. Remember to be grateful and give thanks every day.
What is gratitude?
Gratitude is a thankful appreciation of something that was done for us, either by a person, by life itself or perceived from a higher power.
“Gratitude has a dual meaning: a worldly one and a spiritual one.” – Robert Emmons, professor of psychology.
It can be a ritual when we give thanks, but it can also be a feeling of being grateful for that which we have.
Practising gratitude can make you healthier and happier. Research shows that you’re going to experience more joy, vitality and inner peace if you notice whatever blessings are in your life and give thanks when you experience them. And gratitude does not just make things feel better, it can also make them better. When you look at things in a different way the things you are looking at change.
Gratitude is good for your physical, emotional, and mental health.
Can Practicing Gratitude Really Change Your Life?
There have been quite a few studies done where one group of people were asked daily to write down 5 things they were grateful for that day, another group recorded daily 5 hassles that displeased them that day and a neutral group was asked to list 5 events or circumstances that affected them that day, but they were not told to focus on the positive or on the negative.
If you feel a little skeptical try for a few weeks listing daily 5 things you were grateful in your day. To start off you could list what you saw, heard, smelled, tasted and touched. Or include things like: “Sunset through the clouds;” “the chance to be alive;” and “the generosity of friends.”
After a while you will notice that you feel better about your life as a whole, your health complaints are fewer and you feel better about yourself. You may also notice that you are able to offer others more emotional support or help with a personal problem. This indicates that the practice of gratitude increases your good will to others. And the best benefit of all: the daily practice leads to greater increase in gratitude.
Why this increase in Gratitude you ask?
According to Dr Joe Dispenza: “The neurons that fire together, wire together… The longer the neurons (brain cells) fire, the more of them that fire, and the more intensely they fire, the more they’re going to wire that inner strength –- that happiness, gratitude, feeling confident, feeling successful, feeling loved and lovable.”
And what’s going on in the brain leads to changes in behaviour. Grateful people tend to take better care of themselves and to engage in more protective health behaviours, like regular exercise and a healthy diet. They’re also found to have lower levels of stress. And lowered levels of stress are linked to increased immune function and to decreased rates of cancer and heart disease.
So, when you take better care of what you appreciate that also extends to your body and the people around you.
What about tough times?
Life can sometimes be tough and just surviving can feel like an accomplishment. Can you really feel grateful in a time of loss?
Yes, you can. Adversity can actually boost and deepen gratitude if you allow it to show you not to take things for granted.
Why would a tragic event provoke gratitude? When times are good, you tend to take for granted the very things that deserve your gratitude. In times of uncertainty, though, you often realize that the people and circumstances you’ve come to take for granted are actually of immense value to your life. Gratitude at these times has the power to energise, the power to heal and the power to bring hope. In hard times gratitude can help you to cope.
In good times, and in tough times, gratitude turns out to be one of the most powerful choices you can make.
Putting Gratitude to Work for You
If you want to put all this into practice, here are some simple things you can do to build positive momentum:
- Say Grace: Say one thing you are grateful for. For example, even if you eat a meal alone, you can take a moment to give thanks.
- Keep a Daily Gratitude Journal: As research has shown, this really does work. And yes, there are apps for that.
- Share The Love: Make it a practice to tell a spouse, partner, or friend something you appreciate about them every day.
- Remember Mortality: You never know how long you, or anyone you love, will be alive. How would you treat your loved ones if you kept in mind that this could be the last time you’d ever see them?
How to use Gratitude to manifest your desire?
Years ago, we wished to create a pond with a small waterfall in our garden. One problem though, the water supply we were hooked up to was very unreliable. For weeks we would not have any water coming in as we were the last property in a rural water scheme. Yet we made a detailed drawing of the pond and the construction of the waterfall. We were convinced that once we build it all we would have water.
So, we started digging and building and each day we would take a moment and ‘hear’ the water coming down the rocks and spill over into the pond. There were goldfish swimming in the pond and we saw part of it covered in waterlilies.
By the time we had completed the pond and waterfall structure we received a note from the overseer of the rural scheme telling us that they had found a massive leak on one of the other properties and had repaired this. And yes, a day later water started coming up and the pond started to fill. It has been fed ever since. And each time I hear the murmur of the waterfall I stop and give thanks for this wonderful gift.
So, here are the basic steps to take:
- Make a detailed description of what you wish to manifest. Write it down, add pictures, make a vision board etc. Know that your subconscious is very good in storing and recalling images, so use these as much as you can.
This is your Intention.
- Focus on this description/image each day and imagine that you already have received it. Feel the gratitude for this gift. The emotion will draw the desired creation towards you. This is the Attention your creation needs.
One of the Universal Laws of Thought states: “Where your attention goes, there the creative energy flows.”
- Take some action as if your creation is already here. For instance, if you are trying to manifest a new place to life, buy something for this new house or apartment. This is the Action.
Once you have created your detailed desire, please leave it up to the universe to create it for you. Do not interfere as humans always put limits on the process. The universe has no limits and may create it for you in a wonderful unexpected way.
All you need to do is to have total trust in the outcome. Any doubt will immediately sabotage the process, so stay strong and focused and BELIEVE in your own Creative Powers!