Gratitude has a special place on the spiritual pathway and recent scientific studies have also shown the multitude of benefits they offer. Gratitude helps us embrace and accept life more gracefully and enhances our happiness levels. We’ve all understood and learned the benefits of gratitude and practice it everyday, one of the most popular concepts being the gratitude rock. But there is a catch.
One proverb I like, says ‘Barking dogs don’t bite.’ If we look at this more carefully, we could maybe translate this into ‘Those who do, do. Those who don’t, speak.’ Now, what does this have to do with gratitude? We’ll get to that in a moment.
Verbalising gratitude is a great first step. I come across many clients who are stuck in life focusing on their problems, completely unaware of the many gifts life has brought them. For people at this stage, a gratitude rock or a gratitude journal can be a healing and transformational experience.
But for anyone who crosses that stage, gratitude needs to go much deeper.
Imagine you give someone a chocolate bar and they thank you for it with a smile. If they then proceed to leave the bar unfinished and leave the chocolate and the wrapper in a mess on the table for you to clean up, then the thank you won’t really mean much, would it? So gratitude that does not accompany associated actions does not hold any value.
A simple and yet profound aspect of gratitude is the capacity to offer our services in return. Not to overstep boundaries or violate people in the name of helping them, but a genuine desire to be of service opens up a lot of doors.
Take your gratitude deeper
One very simple way of taking gratitude deeper is to take the thank you a step further. Every time you say thank you to the universe for something, follow that up with an offer to serve. For instance, ‘thank you Universe for this wonderful house. I am open to doing whatever I need to do for the maintenance and upkeep of the house and I do it in joy and love’
When someone does something you are grateful for, it may not always be appropriate to tell them you are here if they need anything. But when we open ourselves up to returning the favours, then we are offered opportunities to be of assistance in subtle and unasked ways.
One is always lower when receiving, equal in gratitude and in a higher position when giving. Subconsciously, many of us tend to use gratitude as a subtle way of asking the universe for more. But when we open up to giving, we allow for much greater experiences on all levels and this process also makes it much easier to get into alignment with the universe.
Here are a few ways you could expand gratitude in your life –
- Send the energy out into the universe, and for the earth. When you feel high, make sure you remember the people around you, your city, country, the earth and send healing out to all of it.
- Go beyond energy and into action. Many healers tend to take the easy way out, merely sending healing or intention as a thank you. Returning favours through physical action is much more grounding however – and if you can’t do this immediately, just be open to doing more for the people around you.
- Intend just before you sleep. Every night before you go to bed, you could use the affirmation ‘I am open to serving humanity and all other beings to the best of my capacity and I do so with love and joy.’
- Remember to thank those who hurt you. This is probably the most powerful one. Before you go to bed, thank everyone who hurts you for the lessons they bring and be open to help them if needed.
Article by Ashwita Goel, Reiki Master
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Having learned Meditation as a child, Ashwita incorporated Reiki into her life during her early teens. After a decade of witnessing the magic Reiki, she felt compelled to take up Reiki professionally, and ended her corporate career in 2007, taking up Reiki full-time. She eventually incorporated EFT, hypnotherapy and past life therapy into her work. Apart from her healing work, she teaches Reiki and meditation, and her book ‘Healing Through Reiki’ is available on Amazon. You can connect with her through Facebook https://www.facebook.com/Reiki.Bangalore,
her website http://www.reiki-bangalore.com/ or visit her blog http://www.ashwita.com/zen/