Discipline #6: Gratitude
* Every Inner Excellence athlete/client has 4 daily goals:
1. Give it your best shot.
2. Be present.
3. Be grateful.
4. Focus on the process and only what you can control.
* When fear is faced completely, love is revealed. Gratitude becomes the wise expression. Joy is enhanced.
* To increase your awareness of beauty and to make your joy full, try the 21 days of gratitude exercise.
“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.” – G.K. Chesterton
In November 2019 I went to Norway (back when international travel was a thing) and did a Wim Hof retreat with Inner Mountain Expeditions. [Wim Hof is known as the Iceman, the guy who went into a lab and had endotoxins injected into his body to show scientists that his training methods (which includes mindset, breathing techniques and cold exposure) produced super-human qualities. Scientists subsequently brought 12 others to the lab to do the same thing (after a week of Wim Hof training), who also showed few ill effects from endotoxin injections.]
An amazing thing happened towards the end of our Wim Hof training. Everyone around me began expressing their gratitude and love for each other. Grown men saying I love you in public. Can you imagine?
The reason for these expressions of love I propose, is that we all faced our fears like never before. Going to Norway in November, getting into a frozen creek in a swimsuit (after breaking through six inches of ice) as well as going on an over two hour hike wearing shorts and no shirt in -9 degrees Celsius weather were scary things. After we all successfully faced our fears, gratitude and love abounded.
The reason is, when fear is completely gone, what’s left is love. Fear is a temporary thing, focused on self and the future. Love is a present and eternal thing, focused on others. Love is fearless. And when you feel love so strongly, you’re grateful.
The flip side is also true: when you are extremely grateful, you feel love. And since joy is the by-product of love, you connect with the greatest feeling in the universe: pure joy.*
Here’s an exercise for you to develop the peace, power and poise that comes from gratitude:
21 days of gratitude
“O, God of wonder, enlarge my capacity to be amazed at what is amazing and end my attraction to the insignificant.” – John Piper
Gratitude is an essential part of Inner Excellence and developing poise under pressure. It is closely linked to the love, wisdom and courage of a clear mind and unburdened heart – the flow of resonance. A grateful heart is one with few needs, willing to sacrifice, able to handle anything that comes. Gratitude can be developed. This tool trains your subconscious to be more aware and see more beauty.
As you learn and grow in non-judgmental awareness, not only will beauty become more apparent, you’ll be surprised by the small moments of joy in the days to come.
Here’s how you do it:
Find a partner to share 3 gratitudes a day for 21 days straight. You might share on text, WhatsApp, voice mail, voice text, or just over dinner.
1. 3 grateful moments for 21 days
2. No repeats
3. Should be specific moments
Share three moments during the day that you realize were small gifts for you. Each gratitude should start with “I’m grateful for..” and should be a specific moment during the day, the smaller and more specific the better. For example, “I’m grateful for my health,” or “my family,” is too general and not a moment. “I’m grateful for the moment this morning when I walked the dog and we stopped to visit with Pedro, Pollie’s pooch, and I had no anxiety,” is great.
You’ll find as you practice this, you’ll get better at seeing the small gifts you’re given each day. Your awareness of beauty will increase as well as your ability to live your purpose. Your joy will be full.
If you start this exercise, let me know how it’s going!
PS. *Joy is a deep sense of well-being, freedom and gratitude, independent of circumstances. Happiness is a positive, temporary feeling based on what’s happening (current circumstances). See the Inner Excellence glossary for more definitions.