The first conscious thought I strive to have each day is a grateful one.

Lately I am awake at least a couple of times – in and out of weird, anxious dreams. So it is not unusual that my first thoughts are anxious too.  It is amazing how fast a couple of errant anxious ideas can spiral down into low grade rumination. Reminding myself through mediation to first create a grateful moment changes everything.

Sometimes it is easy just to remember how grateful I am to hear my dog breathing heavily and regular beside my bed.  Or I just lay awake in early dawn listening to the silence and thanking my lucky stars that I could be born to this beautiful peaceful existence.  Many times I turn and see my husbands’ rounded back and the rise and fall of his breath and remember how many mornings I have been blessed to wake up next to him.  I spend the next fifteen minutes recreating a visceral experience of gratitude.  Like floating on the top of a warm tropical ocean.

Some days when yoga feels too hard,  I set my intention on gratitude. Feeling grateful for the hard work, for losing my balance, the wandering mind or the aching hip joints changes the experience of each qualitatively. It is no wonder that gratitude is one of the cornerstones of positivity consciousness  The most fundamental aspect of a grateful heart is not only that it is open and non-judgmental, but it is also creative. Risk taking comes more easily because you know that there is really nothing to lose.

In every situation , even the most challenging, there is an aspect of gratitude if you look for it.