• Naomi Kiyoko Wilson

How to Practice Gratefulness

Updated: Mar 27

Being grateful is an essential part of being a happy person. However, many of us have busy schedules, and often forget to put aside time to reflect on our privilege. Here are 5 things that you can do to practice gratefulness this week.

1. Write down what you are grateful for.

This can be anything from a simple list of 5 resources that you frequently have access to, to a few paragraphs on an amazing experience that you’ve had. To make this into a habit, spend a few minutes during your day. For example, first thing in the morning or right before going to sleep, writing and reflecting on what you have.

2. Watch a documentary.

Documentaries often shed light on a number of societal issues, which can help you “get out of your head” and gain a new perspective. For example, I recently watched Daughters of Destiny (available on Netflix), a documentary about the experiences of female students in rural India, which made me reflect on how often I take my education for granted. YouTube or streaming services such as Netflix are great resources to find high-quality documentaries on a number of subjects.

3. Volunteer.

Volunteering is one of the best ways to learn about the hardships that others face first-hand. Websites such as VolunteerMatch can help you find volunteer opportunities that are not only meaningful to you but also impactful on your community.

4. Travel.

Traveling can be expensive, but is it definitely worth the money. It allows you to experience how people live on the other side of the planet, and learn about the different cultures and traditions that have influenced that society. By traveling you can also contribute to the economy in that area, allowing you to make a positive impact on others as well. However, be prepared for the culture shock that may occur when you come back; give yourself a few days to adjust to this.

5. Donate.

Donating your belongings has many benefits. It allows you to declutter your space, and put your unwanted belongings to good use by giving them to others. By only keeping what you use on a regular basis, you will gain a better understanding of what you have, which will encourage you to be more grateful for your belongings.

Commit to making gratefulness a part of your daily life. This can be for an hour or a minute, with a group or by yourself. Either way, practice gratefulness, and you will become a happier and more grounded person, and may even inspire others to do the same.

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