On Developing a Gratitude Practice

 

Sometimes, when I talk to certain people, I see it clearly. Negativity. Like a lot of it. Granted, my own knack for slipping into a nice bath of complaints has been around for ages. Still, I am not one to give into the default settings of my programming. I’d been toying with the idea of a gratitude practice, but it wasn’t until Inge mentioned it that I saw it as a possibility. Here is my gratitude practice thus far.

3 in-progress learning experiences

I have looked into templates on Pinterest when I started this practice way back in November. The reason behind templates is twofold. First, it is to facilitate discussion when I am not feeling my best. Often, my moods settle on an epic low note for days or weeks, so I struggle to come up with coherent thoughts as it is. A template creates a routine to this journal. It also acts as a guiding hand, because I am out of practice when it comes to positivity and gratitude–and I admit this not as a point of pride. Not at all. I want to manage my mental health better.

Victim-mentality drives my narrative and I have a rather cruel lens filtering my daily ups and downs. Reframing the experiences as a learning opportunity is like earth-shattering information to me. I do a lot of panicking when conflict arises, and this template reminds me to try and stay calm.

Plus, I think when I look back and see lessons repeating, it neutralizes the dooms-day threat a little bit. It gives me concrete examples of this conflict repeating. Besides, it could act as a good jumping off point for meditation, journaling, and therapy discussions. Hey, maybe I’ll be more self aware and conscious of how I interact with the world (that is the dream, to be quite frank).

a list of things i am grateful for

I try to list some stuff that makes me happy that day. Moreover, I try not to repeat too much. Now, obviously, sometimes duplicates will appear on my lists, but I do make it a point to not check what I wrote the day before until I am done.

but…testing more prompts

But, I noticed that my journal can be a bit cyclical by doing just two things every day. SO. I am incorporating more prompts. I want to reflect more on different things, and then derive my own gratitude nuggets from whatever it is I have reflected on.

The point is for it to be fairly brief and always consistent. So far, I had been journaling every couple of days, which is not that good. I am going to try it tonight, and keep it

 

    Hi there. While watching Ely's introduction of her cat Percy, I thought of

About Me: Meet My Kitties

 

 

Hi there. While watching Ely’s introduction of her cat Percy, I thought of introducing my own cats. Here are my own babies: Momo, Mika and Massy.

honoring corn-loving cat: Momo

I have to mention Momo, our first cat to live with us full-time. Momo was one of the reasons I became vegan. She loved life. I’d see her twist her body in ways I’d never imagined a cat can ever do. She loved corn, and pancakes. I believe she also loved watermelon.

When I had manic episodes, she wanted to play with me. When I was in depressive episodes, she’d lay with me in bed and purr. I wish I’d taken more photos of her. Back then, I was not very social with Momo. It’s something I always feel guilty of.

Baby girl passed away 2010 (I think?), and I was so devastated. I lay around just crying.

Mika the cuddle monster

So, Momo used to get lonely and she wanted friends to play with. Mom adopted Mika. Mika has long hair, and the ugliest meow known to man-kind. She loves to eat, as well. Her favorite human food is lettuce. This cat was such a water baby. She used to walk in on people taking showers and just sit in the corner of the tub, watching the water.

Mika used to quite anti-social. Her favorite person used to be my brother, but it’s now my sister. She is very chatty (not my sister, Mika). And she’s also rather affectionate.

Sometimes, she tricks people into petting her while she eats. I have no clue what purpose that serves for her. I usually do what she wants.

My monkey child: massy

I met Massy when she was a little wee kitten. People were bottle feeding her, because her mommy was gone. After Momo passed away, we adopted Massy. She had fleas and she slept in my room. I felt chosen, I know that’s silly but Massy always makes me feel like I have something to offer.

She loves me so much, she poops in my room. Now THAT is true love. Every night, she checks on me. We cuddle sometimes. She kind of has a temper. You can’t just pet her randomly.

Massy is very picky with food, and with people. She is not very social; but, she’ll come to you if she feels safe around you.

What’s with the m thing?

My little sister’s name starts with M, and she initiated a law of naming cats with M names. Even stray cats get an M name. I take this rule very seriously, okay.

 

  Sometimes, when I talk to certain people, I see it clearly. Negativity. Like a