Yeah, you heard me. You have to practice gratitude. It’s not something that is just going to come naturally to you. You have to have a plan for celebrating the moments of your life. We’ve talked a lot about my gratitude practice. You can find those articles here and here. Now, I want to go over the 8 Rules for Practicing Gratitude.
Appreciate what you have & don’t play the compare game
Comparison is the killer of gratitude and joy. You can’t be grateful for your life if you’re constantly seeking that which your neighbor has so we have to let that go. It’s not going to be easy at first. It’s really easy to see the parent with the child that goes calmly through Target and be a little bit jealous as your child has an epic meltdown in the candy aisle. I know! You have to let that go though and realize that in this moment it’s not your reality. Your reality is dealing with calming down your own toddler. You may feel like you’re failing in that moment, but you aren’t. I also guarantee that there is another part of your day that would make that parent equally jealous.
Look for the positive throughout the day
Okay, I know this one can be very hard. I mean your child is having a meltdown in the middle of Target at the moment, but let’s remember that your child didn’t at the previous 3 stops. You’ve probably tried to pack one too many errands in this trip out, but I know your time is limited so don’t blame yourself. You just have to deal with what is happening now and feel blessed that the rest of the day was easy peasy.
Let go of the need for perfection
Perfection isn’t going to happen. Your child is going to have a massive blow out one day, and you won’t be prepared. You’ll end up covered in spit up without a change of clothes for yourself. It’s going to happen! You just have to learn to laugh at yourself and be okay with your imperfect life. The rest will sort itself out.
Give yourself permission to be you
Sometimes we’re embarrassing. Sometimes we’re flighty. All in all though our personality is who we are fundamentally, and we usually can’t change that drastically. Roll with it. If your flighty try to find ways to respect other people’s time but also give yourself grace. If you are the mom dancing down the aisles of Target, you do you girl. I’m all for it. Seriously!
Live in the moment
This is not always easy. We have busy schedules and are constantly thinking about the next activity. In order to find something in this moment to be grateful for, we have to live in it for a few minutes. We have to look at our child building with their blocks and clap as their tower falls over. We have to squeal with delight as they do. We have to stand on the sidelines cheering during that important basketball game. These are the things they’re going to remember anyway.
It’s easy to get caught up in the am I doing the right thing or not rat race, but you’ve got to let that go. You’ll want to change things about your day or you’ll feel embarrassed by something you did today but don’t spend too much time focused on it. Let it go! If you’re singing Frozen, I’m right there with you. Seriously though it’s really time to just set with it for a moment and send it off into the ether. You can’t change that which has already happened.
Don’t worry about the future
Okay, we have to worry a little bit, but I don’t want you to fret too much about the future. If you’re constantly worried about how your kid will turn out, you probably won’t be able to live in the moment or appreciate their little personalities. You’ll be trying to force them into some box. Don’t! Let’s just let that sort itself out.
I combat all this with my 10-minute gratitude practice. That gratitude practice is something that I’m now so glad to be able to share with you. I want you to go to sleep feeling good about your day and wake up with a different mindset. I want you to be happy and feel the change gratitude can make in your life. That’s why I’m happy to release 100 Joyful Days for the Millennial Mom! It is available for presale now. Items ship early December 2016 and make a great Christmas gift. Feel the gratitude with me and let it help your cup be full.