Healthy & Beautiful, Meditation

21-Day Meditation Experience: (Day 1) Grace through Gratitude

“Grace is not knowledge or reason but rather the amount of light in our souls.” — Pope Francis.

I can remember a time when I just rushed through life.  Although everyday brought on new challenges and new things to do, I was just going through the motions of checking off things on my daily “to-do list”, often going to bed stressed, frantic, and (silently) moaning at the fact that I had to wake up in the morning and do it again.  I felt trapped, unsettled, and sometimes crazy.  I felt as though if I didn’t accomplish everything, I was missing out on something, and it’s not a good space to be in.  Why?  Because I never took time to truly appreciate (and be grateful for) all of the opportunities (and people) my days were holding.

When I started meditating this past March, I went into this with an open mind and heart.  The more I meditated, the more I found myself being present and grateful for every single moment of my day.  It’s through meditation that I learned to ask myself questions on how I was feeling, allowing myself to go with the flow, telling myself it was okay if my entire “to-do list” didn’t get completed, or that it was okay to say “no” to an event, in order to spend some time with myself.  Being in this “space” allows thoughts to flow more freely, to take stock of my physical and mental well-being; and learn to adjust things based on my internal needs.  The more in-tune I became with myself, the happier I’ve become.

Being grateful can be a difficult thing to achieve on a daily basis, when there is so much frantic, negative energy surrounding us.  It’s hard to isolate yourself into a space where light and love shine around you.  My advice is to start out small – give yourself 5 minutes at the end of the day to write down or say five things you are grateful for, that day.  It can be anything that brought you happiness, peace, warmth, etc.  At the end of each week, read the list.  Are they the same things each day/some of the same things?  If so, make it a note to bring that common experience to the forefront more.  The more grateful experiences you can bring to your life each day, the easier this gets!

Below is a quote from Oprah that I truly love, and a great mantra to set my day:

“Gratitude opens up a space of light in every experience.  It opens up a path for grace to flow.”