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I sometimes go through my day thinking, “If I only had XYZ, it would make my life so much easier!” But when I stop and think about the access I have to things, people, and technology I realize my thinking is off. Instead of thinking, “If I only had XYZ” I need to do a better job thinking, “What can I do with XYZ?”

First, I can do a better job being grateful for the things I do have. To do that I need to be aware of the things in my life which make me happy and present me with opportunities.

Here are five ways to be more grateful in your everyday life:

Redefine your statement: When you find yourself saying, “If I only had XYZ, it would be so much easier!” try rewording the statement to be more positive and show gratitude for the things you already do have. Instead, say “What can I do with what I have, now?”

Give thanks for your senses at night: I used to do this before I went to bed every night. I would go through all of my senses one by one and think about everything that I smelled that day, everything I tasted, felt, saw, and heard. It made me appreciate the simple things more and to be aware of what I was experiencing in the now.

Make a list: This was the best thing I did recently. Write down everything that makes you happy and everything you have for which you are grateful. There will be negative things, but if you are reading this right now, then you might be surprised how many positive things will show up on your list.

Volunteer once a month: My friends and I are doing this every month this year. We started with the food bank and planting trees in our community. This month we are volunteering with American Veterans. Volunteering will give you a greater outlook on life. Remind yourself that you do have a lot of things in life for which you can be thankful.

Remind yourself of the greats: Most of the greats out there – the ones we talk about, remember and admire – all struggled at the beginning. In fact, the bigger the struggle, the more we tend to like them and feel good about their success. Be thankful you get to work hard, are going though tough times, or don’t have everything you want right now; one day it will make for a better story that will relate to more people and ultimately inspire others to do the same!

Those of us who can improve our awareness of the things we have, let’s start today! Let’s make a list, reframe our mindset, volunteer, or think about the greats that came before us! Enjoy this awesome day, and as always…

Dream BIG,

Ryan Avery

Author Ryan Avery

Hi, my name is Ryan Avery! Every Sunday I share the "notes" I use to build my keynotes. They are personal stories and tangible strategies we can use to improve the way we communicate at work, at home and with ourselves.

More posts by Ryan Avery

Join the discussion 11 Comments

  • Curtis Yungen says:

    Thanks for the tips and positive perspectives. I appreciate your tip on being aware of your senses; I try to do the same each night in the form of staring at the wall for 20 minutes focusing on being aware of each part of the body. It’s a good way to unwind at the end of the day. I find it a bit astonishing how we may sometimes be so distracted with daily thoughts/situations that we’re not even really aware of the body we inhabit!

  • Rosemary says:

    Recently I realized just how happy it makes me to be doing things for others. I am always aware just how lucky I am and that there are so many who have such difficult lives. Every time I start thinking about my serious health issues ,I remember, how grateful and blessed I am to be alive and surrounded by a loving family and friends who care so much about me. As long as I am able, I will try to make it my mission to help others.

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Thank you for sharing your mission Rosemary and so glad to hear you are helping others! Thanks for being a reader and I hope you have a great Monday!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Hey Curtis! Thanks for sharing and giving this suggestion. What a great concept and so true. I will practice this tonight and I appreciate the insight!

  • Kavi says:

    Love the article Ryan. I’ve just finished a 31-day gratitude challenge and I want to keep going ..
    Gratitude it the best attitude .
    Million thanks.

  • Linda says:

    Your first point….redefine your statement.
    I will be doing that from now on.

    Just now I was thinking ….if only I had xyz and bang….I come across your article!

    Thats creepy lol

    Thanks for a great article.

  • Ryan Avery says:

    So glad to hear it was helpful! This one line will change your life, I know it has for me!

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Awesome! You will have to make sure to join us for our #31DaysofKindness Challenge in July this year!

  • Leanora Erica Mims says:

    I am so grateful for your insights and your writing! I was inspired when I read your article. It will help me tonight as I get ready for bed. Today I was grateful that I was able to get out and walk with a great dog, say hello to children waiting at the school bus, inspire, encourage and motivate them to have a great day of learning and to be able to have food to eat and courteous service. I am also grateful for everyone that took the time to smile at me and encourage me in what I am doing. Life is such a great gift and if we take the time to enjoy the real simple pleasures that we have we can increase the chance of having more of the same in our lives.

    I am inspired every time I read one of your posts. Thank you for taking the time to write them and then post them.

    Yours in gratitude and continued success
    Leanora Erica Mims
    CC, Toastmasters International
    Cornell Business & Technology Park
    VP of Membership

  • Ryan Avery says:

    Hi Leanora! I am so glad you enjoy my posts and they inspire you! Thank you for sharing and it sounds like you had a great day today! Keep inspiring others and encouraging people to have a great day, because I too agree that life is such a great gift!

  • Kavi says:

    Thanks Ryan. Will do. Thanks for taking the time to respond to your followers. Appreciate it. Everyone does!!!

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