the practice of gratitude

One way to automatically feel better when things are going less than optimally, or not as planned, is practicing gratitude. Basically, listing or thinking about things that you’re grateful for serves as an exercise in flipping your perspective to focus on the good.

I have heard this from friends, therapists, Oprah, my mom, and probably many other people over the years. You can be grateful for something as simple as a hot cup of coffee in the morning, or a comfortable bed to sleep in at night. Or, you can choose more specific details of your day that were truly awesome and worth acknowledging. Here’s my list from the past few days:


  1. Writing buddies – people I can share my creative work with and who motivate me to keep going.
  2. The news that I am moving into a new office… that has a window… with natural light! Okay, this was an exciting one!
  3. Supportive friends.
  4. Some amazing new additions to my wardrobe from Fourth of July sales. I don’t want to be materialistic, but I can’t stop loving fashion and clothes.
  5. Outdoor yoga in a beautiful garden behind a historic house right next to my apartment building.
  6. Getting off the bus at DuPont circle and hearing people say Thank You to the bus driver. I am sure this doesn’t happen in most cities, and it is such a nice thing to witness in the morning.
  7. A coffee run with my friend and coworker to the hipster coffee place around the corner from work.
  8. A comfortable bed.
  9. Healthy food to eat. Meals prepared by local chefs that I order each week.
  10. Good books that I’ve recently read and am currently reading – The Immortalists by Chloe Benjamin, You Think It, I’ll Say It by Curtis Sittenfeld, and Florida by Lauren Groff.
  11. Beautiful weather this weekend. Walking around the Smithsonian Folk Life festival and laying out at my friend’s rooftop pool.

What have you been grateful for lately? Can you think of 5 things every week? Every day?



la fille americaine


2 thoughts on “the practice of gratitude”

  1. I love your list! I write a gratitude post every Wednesday — I was scheduling it to publish and found yours tonight. You’re absolutely right…thinking of even one thing I’m truly grateful for always lifts my spirits.

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