You know how people (e.g. Brene Brown) say that gratitude is a huge part of a truly joyful life? I reckon they’re onto something. Gratitude and awareness practices help me feel loved, connected, lighter (especially true when I had depression).
This week, I’m sharing a favourite simple practice that made me go whoaaa. Love and care. Got it. So nice!
It’s a special practice from Chela Davison. It’s about becoming aware of the ways you receive all sorts of lovely things already—things you may not have thought of.
May sound weird, but I realized how my pleather chair cares for me.
I’ll let Chela explain…
[and then I’ll talk about how to take this practice to the bedroom. Of course.]
The gratitude practice
Right now (and throughout the day), pay attention to how you are cared for, held, supported and receiving. Notice structures of support and gestures of love and generosity.
This may be people: someone holding the door open or bringing you your coffee.
It may be the systems and structures that support you, like the roof over your head, the solid frame of your bicycle as you ride down the street. You're held, you're supported, you're taken care of.
You could even get super wild with this and notice the ways in which you're receiving what traditionally feels like cost. For example, when you open your phone bill- feel the privilege of having such a service, such access to connection with others.
Say Thank You. Out loud or in your head. To the people, the places, the structures, the objects that support you.
Last night as I was taking the keys out of my ignition, my car beeped because my lights were still on. Rushes of gratitude. Having had to jump start a few cars in my days, I'm so grateful for this feature. Thanks, I said to my car. Yep, I mean it. Try it, see what happens.
Here are some reflective questions that may help to deepen your work with this:
- What am I noticing about the ways that I am receiving or am taken care of, that I was blind to before?
- Where do I tend to harden around the experience of receptivity, or allowing myself to feel contributed to or taken care of?
- What helps me to soften, allow, receive and trust?
- What or whom do I feel more connected to when directing my attention in this way?
For me, the one about structures really stood out. I realised I totally didn’t pay attention to how my bike was so kind to me and helped me every day. And my bed. And my chair. They help me do my stuff like quiet, awesome friends. O Universe, you do love me!
And some things—like my bike—bring me pleasure, even.
Of course, speaking of, lets take this practice to bedroom: what are all the things that support your pleasure? The softness of your bed, your own body, coconut oil, music, your lover, a breeze… You’re not just making love to yourself/your partner, your whole bedroom/kitchen/forest is making love to you!
So, you’re a lucky thing. You already have millions of Christmas gifts. At the soles of your feet, in your bag, next to your bed. May you enjoy them!
Happy celebrations and holidays,