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According to Jack Canfield, author of The Success Principles and co-author of the Chicken Soup for the Soul series, "Gratitude is the single most important ingredient to living a successful and fulfilled life."

Gratitude not only makes us feel good, it's also one of the greatest attractors of abundance, love, peace, success, health, connection and more. The more we focus on what we already have, the wonderful aspects of our lives and what we appreciate, the more we end up having to be grateful for.

Stop for a moment and think about some of the things that you're grateful for in your own life. Make a list either in your head or on paper. We each have so much to appreciate. When we take the time to acknowledge our many blessings, especially at this time of year, we utilize the power of gratitude in a way that benefits us and those around us in a profound way.

Simple Ways to Practice Gratitude Every Day

We can expand our capacity for gratitude by creating simple and genuine practices. It doesn't really matter what we do or how we do it, just that we come up with easy and meaningful ways to focus on what we're grateful for during the holidays and beyond. Below is a short list of some different possible gratitude practices. Pick one, use many or make up your own practice:
  • Write cards or e-mails expressing your gratitude for others: genuine, specific and personal
  • Meditate/pray and focus on what you're grateful for
  • Have everyone at the dinner table share something they're grateful before you eat (or while you're in the car or other times you're together with your family)
  • Ask people what they're grateful for (and/or ask this question as part of your outgoing voice mail message)
  • Use a gratitude journal and write in it regularly
While so many of us understand and know about the power of gratitude, it's the practice and expression of it that really has an impact. During this holiday season—in the midst of the stress and activities this time of year brings—if we can take the time to think about, feel and express our gratitude and appreciation for life, others and ourselves, we can literally transform our experience of the holidays, as well as of our lives and relationships, in a beautiful way.

Mike Robbins is a best-selling author, sought-after motivational keynote speaker and personal growth expert who works with people and groups of all kinds. Robbins is the author of the best-selling books Focus on the Good Stuff and Be Yourself: Everyone Else Is Already Taken. He and his work have been featured on ABC News, in Forbes, Ladies Home Journal, Self and many others.

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