"I just made gratitude a daily priority.
I went through the day
looking for things to be grateful for,
and something always showed up."
~ Oprah Winfrey
It was under Oprah's encouragement that I began keeping a Gratitude Journal. I've written in journals off and on all my life. A couple decades ago, I began a special kind of journal -- separate from my diary-type journal -- where I write down things I'm grateful for. Some folks write 5 things at the end of each day. Me? I write what I'm grateful for until one page is filled up.
When my daughter Jodie was a kid, we'd do it together. We called it "The Happy Things" and each entry would start with, "I'm happy for ..." Jodie is 23 now, a young professional, figuring out how to adult. On rough days, Jodie does a call-out to her friends on Facebook and says, "I need some happy things. Tell me one. Go!" Then her friends chime in with words or photos or gifs or memes. I love those posts. I love that this practice that has been so beneficial to me has been passed on to her and, through her, to her friends.
Every November, I do a month of gratitude. I post a photo and/or a quotation along with one thing that I am comfortable telling the world that I'm grateful for. I've done that for a few years now. It can be very challenging when life isn't going so well.
The thing is, seeking circumstances I can be grateful for changes how life is going! It's a practice I plan on continuing for the rest of my life and encourage others to try.
Here's an article Oprah wrote about her gratitude practice before the Obama/Romney election. Her words are still gold for me.