The main reason I started my first blog was because I planned to do a 365 Grateful Project. A friend had brought my attention to an article published in U Magazine (a magazine inserted into Brisbane’s Sunday Mail newspaper) on a Brisbane mum called Hailey Bartholomew who had begun a 365 Grateful project. The idea had since spread worldwide and it had become evident how the practice of gratitude had helped so many people of all different walks of life.
Doing my own 365 Grateful project where I took a photo a day, every day for 365 days of something I was grateful for (with a few hiccups along the way!) benefited me in many ways. After many years of working full-time in the corporate world, combined with the varied demands of juggling being a mother of three and running a household, the ability to slow down and to notice and enjoy the beauty and inspirational happenings around me had diminished. Doing this project helped me to slow down and notice what was around me and to reconnect to life, appreciate what I had, to rediscover who I was and what I enjoyed, and to find new passions that I went on to pursue (photography & blogging).
The photo above was was the final image for my 365 Grateful project – Day 365. Here are the words I wrote to explain the image and what I was grateful for:
365 Grateful – Day 365: I’m grateful for this gorgeous African hand-woven basket, my one and only purchase from our trip away to the Byron Bay Hinterland. This was purchased at the Byron Bay Markets. It’s made from Elephant Grass which grows around the Sahel region of West Africa. The leaves are harvested seasonally by the Fra Fra people of Northern Ghana and then soaked and stretched to produce a fine, supple and extra strong fibre. By purchasing this basket, I have helped to maintain the time-honoured craft of weaving and the continued trade relationship with these people. This makes me feel good. This basket also serves to remind me of the wonderful time MrMM and I had on those few days away and also the huge benefits that can be gained by getting away more often.
In my opinion, living with and practicing gratitude is the key to a happier life. Practicing gratitude impacts all areas of our lives. Here are just a few examples:
- Emotional – feel good, less envious of others, helps us bounce back from stress
- Personality – less materialistic, more spiritual, more optimistic
- Social – kinder, less demanding
- Career – better management, improved networking, increased productivity
- Health – better sleep, sick less often
Here is Hailey discussing her 365 Grateful experiences recently at a TEDx event at QUT, Brisbane, Australia. Warning: You might need some tissues on hand!
If you’re feeling a little down and disconnected from life, I highly recommend having a think about doing your own 365 Grateful Project. If not taking a photograph each day, then perhaps keeping a journal in which you write something you are grateful for each day. You will be amazed at what an impact it has on how you live and see your life!
Learn more at Hailey’s 365 grateful site – HERE!
Do you practice gratitude? Have you done a 365 Grateful Project or do you keep a journal?
Ciao for now,
[This post is linked up with Essentially Jess’s #IBOT]