Since writing and publishing my book LOOK WITHIN- Change Your Thinking,Change Your Life in July 2019 I have learnt much from the feedback received on the contents of this book. For those who have some form of spiritual belief, spiritual practice, faith, understanding, interest in the bigger picture, etc, then the feedback has been very positive and supportive of what I have written and they believe that there is a desperate need for such material to be read/studied/adopted/practiced by each of us as individuals, for the longer-term benefit of all in our troubled World.
For those who have little if any spiritual belief, spiritual faith, practice, or not seeking a better understanding of life’s deeper meaning, the bigger picture, etc, then the feedback has been somewhat disheartening.It has become clear to me that many cannot accept the empowerment, or the importance, of adopting a simple proven HABIT such as writing DAILY in a Gratitude Journal, 5 things that they are grateful for! Having adopted and followed such a DAILY practice for 5+ years now myself, and subsequently revelling in the positive outcomes from adopting this simple exercise into my DAILY living 365 days of each year, it was a revelation for me.
It was and is a real ‘wakening’ moment for myself to hear back from people who have read the book offering them 10 simple, proven DAILY HABITS,only to discover that so many who want change in their lives are unable to find 10 – 15 minutes out of the 1440 minutes in each 24 hour day to adopt DAILY HABIT No 1: to write DAILY in a Gratitude Journal 5 things that they are grateful for each and every day! Simple requirement, but people just cannot understand/accept/become aware of, the long-term benefits of adopting such a DAILY practice. For myself, this has been a real eye-opener! People are basically selfish, I think,to the point that they want positive change in their lives but are unable to find the time and be committed to sit for that 10-15 minutes each day to write in that Journal. Extraordinary really! But upon deeper reflection I quickly realised it is not really a surprise given the blog that I wrote and posted just last month titled: Instant Gratification. And therein lies the real problem for our spiritually deprived Western culture, that being the attitude of: ‘I want it, and I want it now!’
The downside of this Instant Gratification attitude/approach to life, is as I stress in the book, that many of the precious ‘gifts’ that we have available to us, particularly in Western societies, then DAILY we simply take them for granted –accept/expect them as always being available to us!. For example, we take it as a given something as precious as the ‘gift’ that we will wake every morning still able to breath and move freely! Why do so many of us not think that such a ’precious gift’ bestowed upon each of us DAILY by a Higher Power (i.e. God/Source/Spirit/?) is not worth taking a few minutes each day to write in a Journal those two incredibly powerful words: THANK YOU.
When one THINKS, and this is the real crux for many and their ongoing problems, I believe, many in society do not take or make the time to STOP to think deeply about life on any regular basis. However, if we did find time to stop and think about life, we would become aware and accept that we are born brand-new EVERY DAY!
STOP now as you are reading this and think about that sentence for a few minutes right now, in this moment! We are reborn each day a brand-new person. Yes, we may look the same, and we usually do until old-man-time catches up with us. But if we THINK deeply about this concept then we will accept that we have the choice, DAILY, to mentally wipe the slate clean from whatever happened in our life the previous day! One may take some time to fully comprehend this important fact on a deep ‘inner’ level, and so one should not just dismiss it and move on with the same mind-set as one has had up to this point in time. Remember the subtitle of my book mentioned above: Change Your Thinking- Change Your Life.
Zig Ziglar once famously wrote the following powerful words: ‘If you always do as you have always done, then you will always get what you have always got.’The message being very simply: if you do not change how you think or behave, why should/would anything in your world change. I would recommend that one write this quote down on numerous ‘sticky’ notes and place them all around your home until those words are deeply absorbed into your thinking to the point that you can quietly repeat these words to yourself as you travel to work, walk on a beach, etc. This is the exact practice that I adopted into my life 15+ years ago, and over time I noticed subtle changes occurring in how I thought about life, what was important, and why I should DAILY be grateful. I have subsequently adopted the HABIT of DAILY writing in a Gratitude Journal every day for the last 5+ years!
Change does not happen overnight, or in a few days or a week, but I do KNOW that after adopting this practice for 21 consecutive days it will become a HABIT, and it is DAILY habits that subtly change behaviour. It really is that simple! However, because it requires some effort i.e. allocating the time, a whole 10-15 minutes to sit quietly somewhere and to DAILY write 5 things in a Gratitude Journal, most won’t or can’t, apply themselves for those few minutes each day, yet they still want or expect change to happen in their precious life! Sorry folks, but life does not work like that. No Effort = No Reward. Pretty simple really!
But because we have been conditioned from an early age, what with social media and the internet now playing a huge part or even controlling our lives, many are looking for some ‘magic bullet’, quick fix life coaching programme, or some other idea, that if we simply apply ourselves to it for a few days or weeks, then ‘poof’ we are suddenly all that we want to be, we have found nirvana/utopia! Wrong!
Purchasing an inexpensive Gratitude Journal and writing in it DAILY 5 things that you are grateful, just seems too easy and unrealistic for most to comprehend and so they let this proven, simple,DAILY HABIT just slide on by. It appears too simplistic for them, and so they quickly conclude that it obviously cannot work. Wrong again!
We are all creatures of habit, therefore if we ‘let go’ of old thinking/habits and create new/positive thinking habits, knowing now that habits develop behaviour patterns, then these new habits will manifest that subtle affirmative shift in behaviour that we all seek. I have been doing exactly that since Christmas 2013 when my darling wife bought me my first Gratitude Journal as a Christmas present, and as it has turned out to be probably THE best Christmas present that I have ever received! I have bought one annually ever since, and DAILY I write in that Journal 5 things that I am grateful for 365 days of the year.
That simple DAILY HABIT has been the ‘key’ to the door of the ‘House of Awareness’ in my life, just as it can and WILL be for you, should you choose to adopt this simple DAILY practice/ritual. I urge you to choose this better way to live, and stop the mental struggles/suffering!
Quote: ‘The Greatest Weakness in Life is Lack of Awareness’– (Buddha)
‘The Greatest Enemy in Life is the Self’ – (Buddha)
These are just 2 of the many powerful quotes discussed in detail in my book. Please, write them down and think about them over the next day’s/weeks. When fully understood and accepted as Universal Truths, these 2 quotes alone will result in a subtle shift in your thinking!
Look back to the title of this blog: CHANGE requires EFFORT. If we do not have the desire or passion to adopt this simple, proven practice/ritual that I have described within this blog into our DAILY life, then long-term positive change will NOT happen or be sustained. What will however manifest in one’s life is continued ongoing mental struggles and suffering. There is much more support material on the powerful benefits of DAILY writing in a gratitude Journal in my book: LOOK WITHIN – Change Your Thing, Change Your Life, along with 9 other DAILY habits that one can slowly adopt into their precious life to ensure the lasting happiness, inner peace and contentment that we all desire, or possibly even crave.
Remember: ‘Successful people are simply people with successful HABITS’ –Brian Tracey
Be honest with yourself about why you have been avoiding adopting this DAILY habit and commit today to commence applying it in your daily life. Appreciate all that you have in your life and for which until now like most of us you have just been taking for granted e.g. the fact that you have a pulse is a good starting point! THE best time to write in your Gratitude Journal is to make it a DAILY ritual to do it the very first thing in your new day, EVERY day! Nothing is more motivating than feeling good, and nothing is easier and more satisfying than writing THANK YOU in your Gratitude Journal, over and over.
Such a HABIT will create excellence in your life!