40 Days of Gratitude

By Luke Jones. Connect with him on TwitterFacebook or Instagram.

Health Room, Gratitude

Image by Dmitri

“Happiness cannot be travelled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.”

Denis Waitley

Last month I wrote about different health challenges you could have perhaps attempted over lent. 

For my own challenge, I chose to note down one thing I’m grateful for at the end of every day, for forty days. I missed a few days now and again, but eventually complied a complete list.

It was a really helpful exercise, and I’d definitely recommend it. Consciously thinking about what I’m grateful for allowed me to appreciate things that I had almost forgotten about, or started to take for granted.

It was really refreshing, and it’s a habit I think is worth continuing. If you can appreciate what you have and live in a state of gratitude, rather than always striving for more and thinking the grass is greener on the other side – life feels much more rewarding.

Anyway, here’s my list of forty things I’m grateful for.

1. I’m grateful for the time I get to share with my lovely girlfriend. She’s awesome, and I’m excited for the future with her.

2. I’m grateful for my family. I’m lucky to have been raised by two loving parents and the best sister I could ask for. They have helped me in so many ways, and continue to do so.

3. I’m grateful for good friends. Ones that keep me grounded, provide support, laughter and great memories.

4. I’m grateful for my health. I perhaps haven’t always taken it as seriously as I should, but there are so many others out there who aren’t as lucky as me, so I try not to take it for granted any-more.

5. I’m grateful for the place I grew up. I used to think it was quite boring round here, but I appreciate it much more now. I’m lucky to live right by the mountains, yet still close enough to the cities.

6. I’m grateful for the present moment. It’s all we’ve got, so it’s important to use it wisely. Deep…  

7. I’m grateful for the ability to move. I’m lucky to have a functioning body that can move, climb, run, jump, lift stuff and play sport. Some people don’t have that luxury.

8. I’m grateful for the access to information I have. Never before have we had so much to learn. I’m lucky to be able to stand on the shoulders of so many giants, and use their knowledge to enrich my own life.

9. Today, I’m grateful for the roof over my head. Something that millions of others don’t have.

10. I’m grateful for having the opportunity to follow my passion. So many people are stuck in a job that they hate. They feel trapped, and can see no escape. I’m lucky to have found my way a little, and I have the chance to go after my dreams. So I’ll give it my best shot.

11. I’m grateful for the access to health promoting food. In affluent countries, we have the luxury to choose what we eat – paleo, vegan, plant-based, standard western… However, many people around the world don’t have a choice at all; they’re concerned with finding any type of food to keep them from starving. 

12. I’m grateful for nature. The opportunity it provides to get outside, exercise, breathe clean air, listen to the silence, be humbled, and clear my mind. Such a shame that we’re wrecking a lot of these fragile environments. 

13. I’m grateful for adventures shared with others. Sometimes it’s great to get out alone, but some experiences and struggles are best shared with others. 

14. I’m grateful for the little things that make people smile. Whether it’s a kind word or compliment. A dance with my grandma. A silly joke. 

15. I’m grateful for uncertainty in life. Sometimes it can be frustrating, but most of the time it keeps me hungry and motivated to keep learning and be the best I can be. It also keeps things interesting – predictable is boring.

16. I’m grateful for simplicity. It’s nice to keep things basic. De-clutter your space and your mind. Doing this allows me to be more productive, and more mindful. 

17. I’m grateful for technology. Simplicity is great, but you have to admit that some of the technology out there (the internet, phones, medicine) is pretty amazing. The rate at which it has developed is insane. I’m very excited for what the future holds, but a bit scared…

 18. I’m grateful for football. It’s awesome. It has taught me a lot about myself and life in general. 

18. I’m grateful for my failures and mistakes. I’ve made a lot of them, but they have always helped me grow and become a stronger version of myself.

19. I’m grateful for smoothies and juicing. Doing a three-day juice fast refreshes the pallet, and lets you appreciate food even more. Smoothies are an awesome way to get a load of plant goodness early in the morning. 

20. I’m grateful for days of rest. Sometimes it’s good to just take a day – no plans, no commitments. Just go with the flow, chill out, relax and recharge.

21. I’m grateful for chiropractic. It has helped me so much, and I don’t know where I would be without it. 

22. I’m grateful for good books. There are so many out there. Check here for some of my favourites. 

23. I’m grateful for meditation. Like everyone, I still struggle with clearing my mind, but it’s a practice. And every so often, it all clicks together and feels great. 

24. I’m grateful for the health community. There are so many people out there, bloggers, scientists, athletes, authors – all spreading the good message, and working together to create a happier, healthier place. 

25. I’m grateful for podcasts. Great for learning on a long run or commute. The Rich Roll Podcast, Philosophise This and the Joe Rogan Experience are a few of my favourites. 

26. I’m grateful for getting things wrong. I do it all the time. It’s all part of the learning process. 

27. I’m grateful for the help of others. It’s good to be independent, but it’s even better to be interdependent – using our strengths to help each other out. 

28. I’m grateful for meeting up with old friends. A lot of friends come and go due to circumstances, but it’s always great to catch up. 

29. I’m grateful for yoga. I used to get frustrated by my lack of flexibility and balance. But like most things, perseverence is the key. Yoga is humbling, and a great way to connect the body with the breath.

30. I’m grateful for jiu jitsu. I’ve recently started to get back into training. Very rarely do I finish rolling without feeling humbled, clear minded and present. It’s awesome, especially when I get to share that experience with friends.

31. I’m grateful for rest. The time I can take to recover, relax, recharge, and plan my next steps. I didn’t always use it very well, but I’m learning to do it better.

32. I’m grateful for the opportunities hard work creates. It sounds very cliché, but if you really dedicate yourself to something, whatever it is, you can succeed. 

33. I’m grateful for challenges. They force me to dig deep and find a solution, growing in the process. Life would be boring without them.

34. I’m grateful for art. I don’t understand most of it. But some things people create are incredible, whether it’s music, a painting, a building. Even the martial arts, or a sport. Anything done with dedication and attention to detail is a form of art, and it’s all great.

35. I’m grateful for the internet. The opportunities that are available because of it. Twenty years ago there was no such thing as a blogger or youtube star. Now the possibilities are endless.

36. I’m grateful for travel. I’ve been lucky enough to have visited some amazing places, and look forward to experiencing more in the future. 

37. I’m grateful for the sun. Helping the plants grow, giving me some vitamin-d, and generally brightening up the day.

38. I’m grateful for my injuries and illnesses. They warn me to slow down and pay more attention to what I’m doing both with my body and my mind. 

39. I’m grateful for a nice glass of water after some intense exercise. Nothing is more refreshing. 

40. I’m grateful for those who read my blog. Starting this blog was pretty big step for me, and I really appreciate anyone who takes the time to read what I have written. Hopefully you get something out of it sometimes too! 

What do you appreciate today? What are you taking for granted that you should perhaps be grateful for?

 


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Luke Jones
Luke Jones is a mover, blogger and wellness enthusiast. He spends his time exploring and sharing ideas in mindful movement, healthy living and adventure.

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