Gratitude Practice

Creating a positive training attitude
by Matan Levkowich

We all seek to improve and progress

We want to progress in our favourite actives, achieve our goals, avoid pain and injuries and maintain our health and vitality. But way too often we forget to acknowledge all the positive things we already have...

Lack of gratitude can lead to a down spiral of bitterness

When we constantly focus on the things that are not there yet, our mind eventually will be affected by it. Craving is craving. No matter if it is for materialistic possessions or body skills, it leads to the same direction

Positive mindset has a tremendous effect on your body

When you create a positive frame to work on the things you can to change/achieve, you can reduce a lot of unnecessary physical tension. Your mindset is also very important when you want to avoid injuries and accidents.

A reminder that you are not alone here

Focusing is on your body it is already a self-centred activity. Practicing gratitude is a good way to respect not only what you have but all those who are part of your journey.

A simple body oriented gratitude practice for you:

Find a comfortable sitting position and close your eyes. Take a moment to observe your breath and relax a bit.

Focus your mind on some or all the topics below (alternatively you can also speak it out loud) and spend a few moments contemplating on how it relates to your life today:

Health & Capability

If you are healthy, that is not to take for granted. If you are living in a capable body, that is too, not obvious. Some people are born with severe limitations or had unfortunate accidents. If you are free of those circumstances, surely you can feel gratitude towards your situation.

Time and Resources

Most people on the plant don't have the possibility to focus their time on training/studying the body. Some must work all day, others don't have the resources to take classes or to get good information. If you have the capacity to focus on yourself, express your gratitude for this privilege.

Your Teachers

No one discovers it all alone. We all had great teachers who helped us to become who we are. Express your gratitude to all those teachers that helped you and shared their knowledge with you.

Success

Improvement doesn't happen everyday. Some days your body simply cannot move forward. If you did manage to improved something or to learn something new, express your gratitude to that. If you didn't manage today, you can simply be grateful that managed to maintain some skills or attributes you already had before.

Challenges

Failure or lack of success should not be categorise as 'negative'. All the difficult things you went through are actually that things that will keep you growing further. Be thankful for that.

Yourself

Finish by expressing gratitude toward your own qualities. Maybe today you were very discipline or you overcome your fears or you were very curious (or any other quality that helped you in your session). This will also be a good reminder about the good stuff you have in you!

That is it!

In the beginning the quality might be artificial or mechanical but the more you do it, the more authentic feelings will arise. Make it a habit and your mood and attitude will for sure improve!

Christina

thanks for the proposition matan! it is a good starting point i think. i observe with myself that i cannot 'make me' be grateful. it is not a switch, or at least i have not found it. so when i am stressed or feel overwhelmed, gratitude feels impossible to attain. in these cases i try to slow down, & some mindful body movements help a lot, going out into nature, or just stopping, breaking the rhythm. after slowing down i can feel that i can access gratitude again..

Matan LevkowichChristina

Hello Christina,

Thank you for sharing your perspective! I agree that you cannot 'turn on' the gratitude button and when you feel gratitude authentically it's the best. I did find it beneficial to do it also mechanically even on days that my heart is not there. I have noticed a positive change after some time with the practice. It's like a muscle that needs stimulation even on days I don't feel like that at all...