Gratitude and Joy

Be Well Be Happy
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The following was taken from Yoga Journal and truly resonated with me. Hope it helps you to find joy and ease in your life.

A practice for welcoming joy is to spend time experiencing gratitude moments—welcoming feelings of gratitude and joy into body and mind. You do this by taking time to recall that which you’re thankful for. Research shows that people who regularly practice gratitude moments are more joyful and experience less depression than those who don’t. The following meditation is good to do at night, before falling asleep or perhaps when waking up feeling tired.

With your eyes open or closed, welcome the environment and sounds around you: the touch of air on your skin, sensations where your body touches the surface that’s supporting it, your body breathing, and sensations present throughout your body. Let go of any judgements as you do this. Be in your space. One breath at a time, one moment at a time.

Welcome into your body feelings of gratitude and joy: perhaps for a friend or animal in your life; for where you live; for something someone has done for you; for having food, shelter, and clothing; or for simply being alive. Allow feelings of gratitude and joy to spread throughout your body. Feel an inner smile or your heart growing warm. Allow feelings of gratitude to expand and radiate throughout your body, and into the space all around you.

Notice opposite feelings that may arise, such as disappointment, grief, and unhappiness. As opposites arise, welcome them. Then, in turn, welcome feelings of gratitude and joy. Allow gratitude to saturate every part of your body that feels, or has felt, unhappy. Stay in this space for as many breaths as you like.

When it feels right, let go of all opposites, allowing yourself to feel only gratitude and joy, for no reason at all.

When you’re ready, open and close your eyes several times while affirming your intention to feel gratitude and joy throughout your day. Then, go about your activities knowing that gratitude and joy are always with you, wherever you are, whatever you’re doing, whomever you’re with, helping you feel connected to yourself and the world around you.

Practice resting in feelings of gratitude and joy during meditation, whenever you’re falling asleep and waking up, and as you go about your day. Taking in small, regular daily doses of gratitude and joy goes a long way toward enhancing your overall health and well-being.

Yogic meditation invites you to treat every life event you encounter as an opportunity to remember, experience, and strengthen your realization of joy as innate and ever-present, no matter what your circumstances. Accessing joy will help you explore your interconnected wholeness with all of life, which in turn enhances your ability to experience unchanging well-being, gain insight, and take the actions you need to experience harmony within yourself, across your lifetime.

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