Gratitude 101

Now is the time for radical gratitude, explosive declarations of appreciations for the good and bad, the cheerful and sad situations, circumstances and relationships in my life!

I am proposing more powerful projections of gratefulness for all that is my life presently. Further, I realise that these new heightened expressions of gratitude only have their real & truest effect when given in the now, presently, this moment. So firstly, let me thank Mr. Thomas Cho of alkalife Natural Alkaline Water for giving me the opportunity to write ‘The Enlightened Life’ post for his website. I love writing and I also cherish the chance to write about Mind/Body and healthy lifestyle topics.


It’s one thing to be grateful for times gone by, but the most powerful expressions of thankfulness are those served up in the present. For example, I can recall my car accident some 10 years ago, and think back at how lucky I am to be alive and also the lessons Ive learned from that fateful night. But it’s only when I declare my gratitude, speak my appreciation or even sing my joy of having gone through such an ordeal, in the present moment, that the freeing, empowered force of gratitude is released and can then lift my spirits, or raise my vibration or consciousness.

For me, gratitude has become my own personal internal warrior. Always waiting, watching, without judgement or want. This warrior is ever ready to be released into any situation or circumstance at any time, armed with love and forgiveness to uplift & bring a great light of transformation to any experience. As Cicero the great Roman Politician said,” Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all others.” In fact for me its the pre requisite for love, forgiveness and freedom. It’s been said time and again that the universe loves gratitude, and that’s because in expressing gratitude in our most powerful, heartfelt and authentic way we are reaffirming our oneness with god, source or infinite mind if you will. In expressing our deepest appreciation we re-declare that everything, everyone is ultimately one. We are then conscious that the Hermetic principle of The Law of Attraction is ALWAYS working for us whether we realise it or not.

The more I express my gratitude the greater gifts I get to express my gratefulness. But here’s where the real power is, the ultimate power is in expressing gratitude for whatever is happening in life currently, without any judgement of whether it was good or bad, pleasurable or painful. To know that beautiful lessons exist in all experiences, and to know that how I’m rewarded for my gratitude has nothing to do with me. I couldn’t care when it comes or how the blessing will look. I’m simple aligning with my most authentic or higher self.

Sound, the spoken word for me seems to have to most direct and responsive effect in co creating with source. So as much as I can I want to speak, pronounce and even sing my gratitude daily.

So I’m setting up a 7 day Gratitude Challenge. Each day for a week I will speak either silently to myself or speak it out loud or sing it, all of the things I am grateful for no matter what they look like or how they make me feel, as much as possible throughout the day. On paper this looks simple enough, but in the midst of the hustle and grind of daily life our minds twist and turn endlessly back and forth between past problems and future concerns, so this will take discipline on my part. However, the idea is to start and build a current of gratitudinal momentum so that after 7 days I can sense a change in how I see situations that were once familiar and how I’m noticing new situations and circumstances to be grateful for.

Thanks for listening speak soon. wayne mcdanielWayne “Mac” McDaniel is passionate about health & well being. His greatest joy is in expressing his talents,skills & gifts in the service of inspiring, motivating & uplifting others into greater versions of themselves. Meditation, eating a whole-foods diet and exercise have been and continue to be the foundation for his success in basketball,acting,speaking and singing. Wayne feels joyous uplifting others thru his singing & public speaking while sharing his knowledge stories and insights. Realising everything is energy and resonance. He seeks to avoid judgement of others realising that we are all making decisions,choices and actions based on our current levels of understanding & consciousness. And as we gain & apply greater knowledge we will intend,think,emote,and feel to reflect this change,raising the levels of consciousness within ourselves and others.

Attitude of Gratitude: 5 Facts to Be Grateful For

Has your fast paced life and heavy workload kept you from enjoying what’s around you?

When was the last time you had a good night sleep without having to take anything for it?

Do you recall the last time you took a few minutes just to savor the things that made you happy?

Here’s a simple way to add more richness, relaxation, and rejuvenation into your busy work-life schedule. Try incorporating a regular dose of “Attitude of Gratitude” into your day. That’s right: gratitude. This technique takes less than 1 minute to do and can boost your health and happiness with persistent practice.

First of all, let’s get clear on, “what is gratitude?” Gratitude, according to Cicero, is the mother of all virtues. He said that within this simple gracious self-affirming act comes a cascade of many wonderful inner human qualities. Merriam Webster Dictionary defines gratitude as: a feeling of appreciation or thanks. Scientists since the late 1990’s have studied this human quality and have found many health and happiness benefits with the constant practice of it.

Gratitude, according to Robert Emmons, the world’s leading researcher in the science of gratitude, explains that gratitude has two parts. According to him, “First it’s an affirmation of goodness. We affirm that there are good things in the world, gifts and benefits we’ve received.” Second, he states that it is “a relationship-strengthening emotion because it requires us to see how we’ve been supported and affirmed by other people.”

Here are some interesting facts about the practice of gratitude:

1. It leads to increasing levels of optimism and other positive emotions, which will eventually help you live a longer and happier life (R. Emmons and Sonja Lyubomirsky).

2. It’s nearly impossible to be grateful and feel envious at the same time. The positive emotion of gratitude cancels out negative emotions (R. Emmons).

3. Grateful people sleep better (Wong Wing-Sze, et al).

4. Grateful people tend to exercise more than those who don’t practice gratitude (R. Emmons).

5. Gratitude is an immune booster (R. Emmons and M. McCullough).

Are YOU ready to start applying this powerful technique into your life?

Here are 3 simple ways for you to choose from to begin your “attitude of gratitude” practice:

1. Do the 3 Blessings exercise, created by Robert Emmons, where you list the 3 things, big or small, that you consider being a positive experience.

2. Say more Thank You’s to people around you — especially when they seem to be correcting you. (A technique I learned from one of my Acupressure Shiatsu teacher, Caroline, over 10 years ago.) This made me feel less inadequate for making a mistake but appreciative for the potential for being better in my practice.

3. Just like the old saying, “Stop and smell the roses!” Literally stop and smell the beautiful scents of nature around you whether you are in your kitchen cooking up a quick meal or outside on your way to your car for an errand. Stop for 30 seconds and take in all the good around you.


Debbie Lyn Toomey, RN, Health & Happiness Specialist, offers quick, practical, and powerful programs to today’s busy women that will triple their energy level, clarity, productivity, and enjoyment within minutes so that they will have more time to rejuvenate their body, quiet their minds, and express their inner divas. For FREE tips on how to gain more by doing less, visit

A Moment of Gratitude

A Moment of Gratitude….

During this busy time of year, it’s easy to get caught up in the hustle bustle of meal planning, gift buying, and travel plans. ‘Black Friday’ sales begin earlier than ever before, and aggressive consumerism always makes headline news. Amongst the stress of holiday planning, many of us forget that the true meaning of Thanksgiving is gratitude. The pilgrims and Indians came together to celebrate and be thankful for the rich and abundant gifts from the earth. They celebrated friendship, camaraderie, and potential. The very first Thanksgiving feast was one of gratefulness.

Gratitude is an idea that I present to my clients and yoga students often. Gratitude creates space for abundance, and when we let go of the ‘I wants’ we suddenly realize how much we already have. Cultivating a deep sense of gratitude takes practice. Just as we practice yoga postures, we must also make time to practice the feeling of gratitude, tending to it like a gardener tends the soil. Just as a flower wilts without water, gratitude wanes without appropriate time and attention.

During this holiday season, I challenge you to cultivate your own garden of gratitude. Begin a gratitude journal, writing down 2-3 things that you are grateful for each day. Use this simple meditation each morning or evening:

Sitting up tall in a quiet space, place both hands, one on top of the other over your heart center. Take a few deep, slow breaths and begin to think about a thing or a person that you are grateful for. As you continue to breath into the thought, begin to feel gentle warmth emanating from your heart. Let this feeling expand throughout every cell. Spend at least 3 minutes, present in this sensation of gratitude in the heart center. Anytime that you feel the mind begin to wander to another thought, simply bring the mind back to the breath, and back to the warm feeling of gratitude.

Finally, my own moment of gratitude:
Today, I am grateful for all of my clients and yoga students. You have all taught me so much about myself over this past year. Each new day, I am challenged to move beyond my comfort zone, and have grown exponentially as a clinician, a teacher, and a person- more than I ever thought possible. A sincere Thank You to each of you.

Rachel Matrejek works at The Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center, she is a licensed counselor and a certified yoga instructor. Located in Arlington Heights, The Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center, provides the guiding light of emotional wellness for couples and families,and provides services such as: couples and family counseling, individual counseling, psychiatry and personal development workshops. For more information about their services, visit

Rachel Matrejek works at The Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center, she is a licensed counselor and a certified yoga instructor. Located in Arlington Heights, The Lighthouse Emotional Wellness Center, provides the guiding light of emotional wellness for couples and families,and provides services such as: couples and family counseling, individual counseling, psychiatry and personal development workshops. For more information about their services, visit

Gratitude – Top Ten Reasons to Adopt the LAW of GRATITUDE

What would your day be like if you started and ended it by simply noticing all that you have in your life? If you count all your assets, you always show a profit. Gratitude is a natural high.

When you live in tandem with your spirit, appreciating all of life and what you have, you discover more joy and kindness in the world. Miracles happen everywhere all the time, but only those with an “Attitude of Gratitude” seem to notice them. This circle of peace grows and you return to your natural state of joy, love and peace, knowing you are whole and complete just as you are.

“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent
of all the others.” ~ Cicero

The following is a list of the top ten reasons to adopt the Law of Gratitude in your life:

One. Being in Gratitude Only Has Positive Side Effects.

Positive emotions make you feel good and offer a sense of comfort. When we take a few moments to express our appreciation inwardly or to another, immediately we begin to feel happier, more relaxed, more optimistic.

Two. Feelings of Gratitude Provide Short-Cuts to Miracles.

Negative thoughts and feelings create an interruption in the natural flow of life. When you are feeling positive and grateful you accelerate what it is that you desire. Consciously appreciating what you already have is the short-cut to manifestation and the secret to personal fulfillment.

Three. Thoughts of Gratitude Flood Your Body with Immune-Boosting Endorphins.

Studies also provide evidence that a positive, appreciative attitude enhances the body’s healing system and general health. When you hold feelings of thankfulness for at least 15 to 20 seconds, beneficial physiological changes take place in your body. Levels of the stress hormones cortisol and norepinephrine decrease, producing a cascade of beneficial metabolic changes. Coronary arteries relax, thus increasing the blood supply to your heart. And your breathing becomes deeper, raising the oxygen level of your tissues.

Four. Feeling Grateful Puts you Back into the ‘Flow of Life’ at the Speed of Thought.

Thoughts create things. If you are feeling and thinking positive thoughts, you create positive situations. You draw positive people to you. Like attracts like.

Five. Gratitude Unlocks the Fullness of Life.

Feelings of gratitude turn what you have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast or a house into a home. Gratitude makes sense of your past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.

Six. Feelings of Gratitude Give You a ‘Natural High’.

Grateful people tend to be more optimistic, a characteristic that researchers say boosts the immune system. Studies indicate that daily gratitude exercises result in higher reported levels of alertness, enthusiasm, determination, optimism and energy. Grateful people experience less depression and stress, are more likely to help others, exercise regularly and tend to make more progress toward personal goals. People who feel grateful are also more likely to feel loved.

Seven. Gratitude Provides an Immediate Sense of Well-Being.

Gratitude, it turns out, can help us better manage stress. Gratitude research is beginning to suggest that feelings of thankfulness have tremendous positive value in helping people cope with daily problems, especially stress.

Eight. Feeling Grateful is the Main Cause of ‘Sustained Joy’.

Focusing on the gifts one has been given is an antidote to envy, resentment, regret and other negative states that undermine long-term happiness. Joy is the simplest form of gratitude.

Nine. The More You Give—The More You Receive.

You always get more of whatever you appreciate. When you express love, gratitude and sincere appreciation, you naturally expand. Consciously appreciating what you already have is the short-cut to manifestation and the secret to personal fulfillment. The more you assist others, the more you will assist yourself.

Ten. When You Are Genuinely Thankful Anger and Fear Disappear.

One of the incredible truths about gratitude is that it is impossible to feel both the positive emotion of thankfulness and a negative emotion such as anger or fear at the same time.

To Practice This Thought:
• Be lavish in your gratefulness.
• Make gratitude a daily ritual.
• Be thankful for whatever
forces you to deal with your own strong emotions.
• Set aside an hour or two to do nothing much except be grateful.

Focus on what is working in your life and what IS right in the world. It doesn’t matter how small or seemingly insignificant it may be. Before long you will notice that more things will fall into place with little or no effort on your part. Gratitude is a wonderful tool to use to feel good fast.

Amirah © All Rights Reserved.