It's official -- December is here and with that the mad dash towards the close of the year and the many different holiday festivities you have planned.
You may be experiencing excitement with the build up towards New Years or you may be feeling exhausted and ready for a holiday. Some of you may be experiencing a heightened sense of anxiety or even stress that surrounds this time of year.
As this is the month of December and we hear "tis the season of giving", why don't you practise giving back to yourself by choosing gratitude?
One of the easiest ways to experience more contentment, joy and happiness is to practise being thankful for what is in your life right now.
Wherever you are on the scale of fluctuating daily emotions we all can benefit from practising gratitude.
The energy of gratitude is powerful because it allows you to rise above situations or states of being that would normally disempower you or knock you off your centre.
This is because there is an awareness within you that there are a lot of people, places, things and situations to be truly thankful for. Knowing this is powerful as you are tapping into love and an interconnectedness with others. The recognition of what you're thankful for allows your heart to expand and a real sense of contentment, happiness and joy is experienced.
I'm not suggesting that there will be days that are not challenging -- even if you are practising gratitude -- but by beginning each day being thankful you are actively choosing to take your awareness into your heart.
Simply close your eyes and start taking slow rhythmic breaths concentrating on the sound of your breath. Feel the breath entering in through your nostrils and exiting slowly out of your mouth. As you breathe, feel any anxiety that you may be holding onto slowly dissolve with each inhalation and exhalation. Repeat this process for a count of 5 inhalations and exhalations.
At the end of your breathing exercise you should be feeling more relaxed. Sit quietly and ask yourself "What am I grateful for in this moment?"
You don't need to rush the answer -- simply allow the answer to come to your mind.
The answer that you come up with should fill your heart with a sense of gratitude. The feeling is similar to experiencing a sense of wonder and joy. You should feel happy and uplifted by the experience.
Feel the expansion in your chest that tells you yes, I am thankful for this... whatever it might be. It could be a sunrise, a smile you received today, a friend, a bonus, a gift, your dog, your health, running on the beach, seeing a rainbow... the list is endless.
When you feel your heart expand, you are opening yourself up to more! It may come in the form of a new opportunity, more energy, a higher frequency/vibration, more positive emotions and more positive experiences.
As you breathe in, keep thinking of what you are grateful for and allow the energy to keep flowing to you.
Now come up with another thing that you are truly grateful for.
Again, you must feel your body respond to what you are thankful for. If you do not 'feel a response' then think of something else until you experience a sense of expansion. It is similar to an 'aha' moment -- that moment when you know or have the feeling of perceiving something that you hadn't before.
When you are ready gently bring your awareness back to the room and open your eyes.
You will start to identify quickly with what you are truly grateful for because the body does not lie. You will feel your heart expand.
Use this exercise daily to raise your vibration, shift your mood, as a form of prayer, and as a way of being more present.
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