It’s always good to have gratitude list ideas handy when the going gets tough. Especially during early recovery, when life can be a grand roller coaster ride of emotions, a gratitude list can even things out and provide a reminder about what’s important. There have been a number of empirical studies on gratitude, and according to Doctors Randy and Lori Sansone, M.D., the majority of them indicate an association between gratitude and a sense of overall wellbeing. This is critical to recovery from substance abuse.
Going Deep with Ideas for a Gratitude List
To get really deep gratitude list ideas, try these three things:
- Set an exorbitant goal – say, 150 things to be grateful for today. You’re bound to come up with some things you’ve never expressed gratitude for before, but which are truly things to appreciate. The more you list, the deeper you will dig.
- Be specific — instead of listing something generic like “nature,” list specific objects of nature you see on a regular basis.
- Feel the gratitude. Close your eyes and visualize each thing on your list and then give rise to the appreciation that resides in each.
Here are some examples of things that might go on a deep gratitude list:
- The crooked toe on my cat’s paw. It makes her unique and I know for certain that she belongs to me when I see it.
- The dust particles dancing in the sunlight. They look like specks of gold at certain times of the day and remind me that even dust can be beautiful.
- The lavender color of the mountains on the horizon at sunset. Framed by my living room window, they look like a painting.
- Naptime. Time for letting go and just being is such a luxury. What a gift.
- The temperature of my shower every morning. I love the way it turns from chilly to hot in almost an instant; it makes me feel so alive.
Getting out of a recovery funk may simply be a matter of taking stock of what’s good in life, and that’s where gratitude list ideas play an important role.