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page by Paige

How to Handle Stressful Days

Archie & Beatrix, my dogs

“If you want to feel rich, just count the things you have that money can’t buy.” ~Unknown

Who doesn’t consider having a temper tantrum that would impress toddlers when things, sometimes beyond all reasonable comprehension, are just not going well?

While I find screaming, pouting, blaming (or all three) to be entirely unproductive, I found the best way to direct my energy, in the less than perfect moments, is to actually prepare myself for them.

I do this by ensuring what I am grateful for is always close to my mind and heart. I find there are few better ways to put bad events into perspective than to have a readily accessible mental list of all the good and positive aspects of my life.

Next to my bed is a small notebook. At night I write a quick list of maybe 3 to 5 things for which I am grateful. Examples range from being grateful for my dogs and the joy they bring me, to getting up every morning to pursue my dream, and having access to healthy food.

This top-of-mind mental list can, and does, inject considerable perspective when I find myself in situations which are tough, trying, and generally just not fun.

Apps and a Book to Help You with a Gratitude Journal

If you want a great app to help you get started with your own gratitude practice try The Gratitude Habit. It is free and comes with a good 3 day introduction. The creator understands that some people may be uncomfortable with the idea of a gratitude practice and structures his app around the question of, “What went well today?” This, I feel, makes The Gratitude Habit approachable to a large spectrum of people with varying levels of comfort around beginning this kind of practice.

Another useful app I use daily is the Gratitude Diary. It is free and allows you to keep a journal of all that you are grateful for right in your pocket. It is a great app for people who travel frequently!

Simple Abundance by author Sarah Ban Breathnach details how the act of being grateful brought enormous abundance into her life. Clearly her technique works, her book was on the bestseller list for two years!

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