Practicing gratitude in recovery has become a common topic when it comes to recovery. Even though it seems like something you should do, it is not always the first thing you may want to spend your free time doing. It can also be difficult to know how to express and practice gratitude in a way that feels authentic to you.
In order to begin implementing this practice in your daily routine, it can be helpful to first identify the benefits of practicing gratitude.
What Makes Gratitude Beneficial?
Unfortunately, it is highly prevalent to take the things in your life for granted — like food, water, and shelter — and can even include the people in your life as well. When you take the things in your life for granted, you might succumb to the false notion that you do not have enough in your life or that you have not accomplished enough. These beliefs can become so influential that they cause you to question your commitment to your sobriety and recovery journey. This puts you at a high risk of experiencing a relapse.
Getting in the habit of practicing daily gratitude significantly reduces your risk of experiencing a relapse and compromising your sobriety. It does this by showing you that the so-called “mundane” aspects of life are actually quite remarkable and worth acknowledging, at the very least. After all, it is truly remarkable that you have a safe place to live, people that love and care about you, and a world where sunsets and chocolate chip cookies exist all at the same time.
The days when you feel frustrated or down in some way are the days when gratitude becomes most important. Regularly practicing gratitude can boost your mood, reduce anxiety and depression, and help you feel more optimistic about life in general.
Ways to Practice Gratitude
Another battle that can interfere with your ability to begin practicing gratitude regularly can be your unawareness regarding how to practice gratitude in a way that resonates with you. Below are some different ways you can try to practice gratitude effectively.
Make Art About Gratitude
Instead of writing down things you are grateful for, you can try making art that is centered around gratitude. This could involve painting or drawing pictures of things you see throughout your day that you find beautiful. Perhaps you saw a building that was visually striking or a tree that had an interesting shape with bright green leaves. You may even see a loved one smile and feel compelled to express your gratitude for their joy by singing a song about it. Whatever mode of expression feels authentic to you, give it a try.
Make a Collage of Pictures of Things You Are Grateful For
Having a constant visual representation of the things you are grateful for can help remind you to not take the things in your life for granted. The act of gathering pictures or taking pictures yourself of things that you love and care about can help you express and acknowledge your gratitude for these things. Plus, building upon the same collage can help you see all of the beautiful things in your life altogether at once. It can show you that life is constantly filled with new things to be grateful for.
Make Vlogs About What You Find Amazing in Your Life
Video blogs, or vlogs, are becoming increasingly popular in society due to the rise in electronic devices and social media usage. Even though heavy use of electronics can be consequential, this does not mean that they are inherently bad. In fact, you can use them as a tool to help you express daily gratitude for various things in your life. For example, you can make a plan to start vlogging about things you are grateful for. To do so, you can plan on visiting a different, local place for every vlog you make. While visiting that place, you can look around, film the cool things you see, and express all the amazing details about what is around you in those areas. Doing so can leave you feeling grateful for the many things around you that are utterly wonderful.
Try Doing Yoga
Practicing yoga is a great way to also practice gratitude, oddly enough. During a yoga class, the leader usually discusses how amazing the body is and why you should be grateful for it. They help to remind you of all the amazing things your body does for you. They also discuss the beauty that can be found throughout life as well. By taking these yoga classes, you can be guided by another and rediscover all the wonderful things in your life that you can be grateful for.
Implementing gratitude in your daily routine is extremely beneficial for your recovery. Even though you may be aware of these benefits, it can be difficult to know where to start when finding a practice that resonates with you. To begin, you can try making art about gratitude, making a collage of the things you are grateful for, making vlogs about the beauty in your life, and even trying yoga. At West Coast Recovery Centers, we want to help remind you of all you have accomplished and that you have to be grateful for in life. We know that sometimes this is not an easy task and may require extra assistance. That is why our staff members are trained in various modalities to you with the kind of care that is most effective for you. To learn more, call us today at (760) 492-6509.