Focusing on things that you are grateful for will put things in perspective and change your mood. It keeps you from thinking negative. It produces inspiration and motivation to focus on the positive and nurture the things that really matter to us.
Gratitude can also lift our spirit when trials come and keep us from discouragement. Melody Beattie said, "Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, and confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow."
If we believe that that no matter what happens in life (good or bad) that there is a purpose behind it then we can unleash gratitude in great proportions. With the understanding that there is a power greater than you that is in control of the universe and that all things work for the better good we become free from the chains of discouragement. When we believe this no matter what is happening we can always have joy and a peace about things. H. Stephen Glenn states, "Any positive movement in the right direction if it's received with a spirit of celebration, will produce more movement in the same direction."
You can practice gratitude in many different ways. One way is to write down a list of the things you are grateful for and write down next to each thing what need of yours was met. Then allow yourself to fully cherish this moment or action. You can also reflect on what you are grateful for without writing it down.
Another way to practice gratitude is to verbally express it to others and share with them what need of yours was met by what they said or did. When we simply say, "thank you" we do not fully express gratitude. For example, instead of saying "thank you" we can say, "I am really grateful that you listened to me yesterday because I was really wanting to talk to someone."
A third way to express gratitude is to offer worship to God. This a great way to release gratitude fully. When we understand that everything that we have that is beautiful is a gift from God and have the opportunity to express it we unleash more positive energy into our lives and the universe.
"Be joyful always; pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus." - 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18
"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life." - Proverbs 4:23