3 Reasons You Should Practice Gratitude Every Day

3 Reasons You Should Practice Gratitude Every Day

When we get caught up in the business of life sometimes we forget to take time to appreciate all of the good things going on in life. Practicing gratitude is a great thing to do not only during the holiday season but all year round!

Being gracious has many benefits for your mental health, your outlook on life, and it doesn’t take long to do. All the more reason why practicing gratitude should be added to your every day routine.

There is something to be said about how our thoughts contribute to our mood for the day. More often than not when we focus on the negative thoughts going on around us, we are going to see the negative things around us. Creating a negative environment around us.

Daily Gratitude is Great for Your Mental Health

When we change what we focus on, such as things we are grateful for, we begin to make a shift in our minds. That shift is going to have us view the world in a different light, a more positive light full of gratitude. 

Now, that’s not to say that practicing gratitude every day will take the bad days away. But they will make the harder days a little bit easier knowing we have so much to be grateful for in our lives. According to a study done looking at how gratitude affects your brain, it can have long-term benefits!

Practicing Gratitude Daily Takes Only a Few Minutes

Practicing gratitude only takes a few minutes, or even seconds, every day! There are so many different ways to practice gratitude and you can do it throughout the day as well!

I write down something I am grateful for every day in a journal so I can look back and see all of the great things going on in my life if I am ever feeling down. Other times I message a friend something I am grateful for them for. Not only does that help your mindset, but it is also setting your friend up for a positive day as well!

Whether you are writing down something you are thankful for daily, telling someone you are thankful for them, or having those gracious thoughts in your brain they don’t take much time and do so much good in our lives! Our thoughts become our actions and how we view the world. Having positive thoughts = a more positive world.

Practicing Gratitude Daily Helps You Redefine Your Priorities

The more we practice gratitude daily in our lives, the more we will begin to see common threads popping up in our lives whether they are negative or positive. If you begin to notice those negative areas in your life, you can use your gratitude practice to change your views on them.

I’ve realized in my life areas that I continuously knockdown with negative thoughts. I have taken a more conscious effort to acknowledge those thoughts and find something in the situation I can be grateful for. Realizing I am having those negative thoughts has helped me realize I need to change that situation so it isn’t bringing me down.

The great thing about being human is we are able to make conscious decisions to change our life. Change our words. Change our thoughts. All of which affect how we come across the world. If you aren’t happy with your job, you can still be grateful that you have a steady income while you find something more fulfilling.

Changing the way we frame our thoughts is going to change the way we view and interact in our world. I challenge you today to find three things to be grateful for. They don’t have to be big. Today I am grateful for my dogs, heat during these cold days, and the benefits of working from home.

Let me know in the comments what you are grateful for today!

This post was written by Kayla Bowie. You can find her on Instagram: kaylacoffeechats or on her website: kaylacoffeechats.com

9 Winter Self-Care Ideas

I believe in the winter, even more than any other time of year, it’s important to care for ourselves a little extra. It’s cold, we’re stuck inside a lot more, and the shorter days can be draining. We need to take care of ourselves before we take care of others so we can be at our best too. And man, we are in the depths of winter here in the PNW! Our climate doesn’t change too much from a windy and wet winter to an icy and snowy winter wonderland. Guess which one we got this year?! NOT the latter. I don’t prefer the cold much this time of year, but in the summer I flip flop. I guess I’m glad we have even a few seasons here though.

The things I enjoy doing the most are the ones I try to incorporate into my week regularly, but especially in the winter. Here are some of the self-care I like to incorporate:

Drinking hot tea

Hot drinks are more popular in the winter, but I’m really loving hot tea. I love drinking it at night. Hot tea is also great when I have a headache or just want to relax. Try different kinds of tea and find one you like. Not all teas are the same.

Reading a good book

I go through phases of reading a lot, and then not really reading much. This month, I’m reading Atomic Habits by James Clear. The wonderful thing about reading is that there are so many different types of books. If you’re reading a novel or other kind of story, be present with it and allow yourself to escape reality for a little while. Choose a book in a warm setting during the winter to take it one step further.

Napping with big blankets

Luxuriously big blankets are great for naps. When the weather isn’t great, taking a nap can make things better. Getting rest, especially when you need it, is a great way to feel refreshed again when it’s cold outside.

Treating yourself to spa like activities at home

This could be face masks, scrubs, moisturizers, hair masks, taking a bath with bath salts or bath bombs, taking a shower or doing your nails at home. Whatever it is you like to do for your body, skin or nails can be an awesome way to care for yourself in the winter.

Making homemade meals or comfort food

Taking the time to make a hot meal or my favorite comfort food is another great thing to do. Mac n cheese, tacos, chicken divan casserole, soups and meatloaf are a few things I love. If you love to bake, bake some goodies. It doesn’t have to be a complicated recipe either! Try mug cakes that you can make in the microwave for something quick and easy.

Watching your favorite movies

We have so many streaming options these days, it’s crazy! There is always something that you can sit down and enjoy. Make an event of it by popping some popcorn or a healthy treat to eat while watching.

Connecting with friends (or disconnecting when needed)

Feeling alone is easy right now, so making the effort to connect with friends is one of the biggest forms of self-care you can do. Get on the phone with them or connect on Zoom. Sometimes you need to disconnect from friends too. Do whichever one you need at the moment.

Listening to music

With music apps at your fingertips, you can create playlists for every mood or just random ones too. Have a dance party, learn the lyrics and sing along (those can be found online too), or lay back and allow yourself to get lost in the music you love.

Time with pets

Playing with your pets is also a refreshing way to care for yourself in the winter. They will love it and so will you. Cuddling with them is extra cozy when it’s cold outside too.

What is your favorite way to practice self-care in the winter? I would love to hear what you do in the comments below.

January Review and February Goals

I love when a new month starts on a Monday, it just feels right doesn’t it? Like a new, fresh start all shiny and packaged up tight. Our new dog Eevee is almost 5 months old and she is still in the beginning stages of training and learning so much, doing so well already. I am so proud of myself for making so much positive progress towards the few goals I had in January.

January went by in a flash, it was here one minute and gone the next. However, I’ve been told a bunch of times during the last few weeks that having your goals and planner all thought out and done by the 1st of each month doesn’t really matter. So what, start your plan, write it down, get started… that’s all that matters. So here’s a view of things I wanted to get done in January-while focusing on my word of the year, Intention. Which mainly just meant that I was going to do these things with purpose and be well thought out while getting them accomplished.

Here’s a peek at things I checked off my goals list in January:
-Almost (!) finished SOAR program- listening to the rest of R module
-Stuck to Sunday Planning and weekly planning with Stephanie and power hours with Pamela
-Morning rhythms/evening routines- some semblance of one, even just ideas of steps to take
-Cleaned up closet and excess clothes
-Signed up for a few online courses/and memberships
-Post to blog once a week, 4x a month (I did this 3/4 times and my social media helper posted for me once to keep me on schedule)
-Regularly post to social media FB page, done by Bonnie, I feel like my engagement and comments went up some which was nice
-Post 4x a week to Instagram and try to engage and comment more for growth
-Clean out social media clutter, email junk, and cellphone declutter as well (get organized)

This month, in February I would like to:
-Read a book this month “Atomic Habits”
-One to two blog posts per week, published on time or scheduled early
-Finish R in SOAR program in A Purpose Driven Mom Club (APDM)
-Personal Project: Move photos from Photoshop to external, as well as FB photos cleanup and transfer
-Hire out services for Pinterest and Editing, email management and my VA Pam
-Get moving as much as possible (exercise/walking wise
-Build Eevee’s training portfolio (consistency is key!)
-Eat healthier by making complete meals (protein, veggie and a starch or fruit)

I think a list of this size is doable though as long as I’m checking in with my goals regularly and filling in my weeks as I go. I’m very proud of the steps I’ve taken already and the work I’ve been doing to get better with my skills.

What are your goals this month? Personal? Work related? Family? Hobby? Health and fitness? Etc.

I’d love to hear what they are, what you accomplished last month and what you’ve been up to lately.

January Favorites

It’s absolutely crazy that we are already one whole month through 2021. I’ve never felt a month go by so fast before! We’ve been staying at home, still being safe by quarantining and staying away from the public. This month has brought a change of life from ordering groceries online to strict doctor office rules, trying to find new hobbies and opportunities from home and still be social somehow without others being a risk to us. Even our new puppy training is online because they are not doing it in person right now with COVID going on. I am beyond excited that we are in a new year- I think time is continuing however it’s what you make of it and a fresh start always feels good. I have been trying to abide by my Word of the Year: Intention– which I think has been going pretty well maybe a solid 75% and in one month I’d say that’s great! Plus the start of winter/middle of winter has been rough and very extremely wet, windy and cold. Here’s some simple things I’ve been loving and enjoying lately…

Starting puppy training classes:

We got a referral from a liter mates family and signed up with Lucid Dog Training locally, we have Katie as a trainer and although we’ve only had one session so far it’s been great! They teach us as much as they teach Eevee. She is learning slowly with the basics but with absolutely consistency I’m sure she will grow to become a well behaved dog.

Ted Bundy: I fell in love with a killer doc:

I was very interested in his story since I don’t know much about certain crime sprees or serial killers (not creepy, simply psychology) but I watched this all on one afternoon and couldn’t pause it! It covers his whole rein of terror but from a unique point of view, from the woman he was in love with and cohabitating with for years, the police investigation (or lack thereof), and how his demise finally came down. I would encourage to watch it- I don’t remember it being super graphic but shocking still in all the best ways.

Visiting with friends safely while keeping that social connection:

It’s so good to feel like I can invite people over again. Especially because we have been at home strictly and literally going nowhere lately. I do worry about others and their exposure but I only invite the few people I absolutely trust!

My iPhone 12 Pro Max:

I had the iPhone X and hated it after being a true iPhone owner up until then, I jump between Apple and Android but the new iPhone 12 Pro Max came out and I’m now at home functioning on strictly Apple products so I wanted to get compatible with them all. Best choice I ever made! And I convinced my husband to switch back with me (a very strict Android user) and he loves it too!

New Year YouTube videos, positivity and motivating routines:

I’ve been following and finding new cleaning and organizing channels as well as mental health and daily routines. Lately, my two favorite channels are Renee Amberg and Brianna K. One of my upcoming goals will be to try to lead a greener cleaner life and to be more minimal and base on NEEDS only.

A Purpose Driven Mom group and S.O.A.R program:

I have been participating and growing in this Facebook group and online course with Cara Harvey. I’m so glad I joined and made it my priority this month. We do a virtual weekly Sunday planning and an accountability check in with what she calls “pods”, like the time management or health pod and those have kept me productive and moving forward. Plus I’ve made some really great friends that I can rely and lean on in the entrepreneurial space.

Content SOS program and hiring help for my blog/social media:

For the past year I have hired a VA, Pamela Hodges from Little Learning Moments and Hodge Podge Moments. She’s been great and has been working with me on how I can work smarter not harder, accomplish more and reach my goals step by step. I have also been able to get help with my social media and my Pinterest strategy (with friends Bonnie and Maddie) as well that will in turn bring me more of the audience I really would like to have. I’m enjoying getting farther in my journey and finding my vision.


Our Atlantic Roots: Carry On

I listened to these two songs today while I was writing this but these are new favorites! I love this youtube channel of music playlists and compilations called “alexrainbirdmusic“. The mood/genre playlists are always just what I’m looking for! I got so much done today while I was just jamming out or listening to the lyrics. It was calm, serene, upbeat enough and let me focus on my work while compiling words for this post.

I guess I had a few less “things I loved” than I thought- but I hope you like hearing about them. It’s been just such a busy month with our new puppy, Eevee, she is getting trained but our seconds of every day have still been all dedicated to her. I’m looking forward to getting to be my own person again and being creative (in the zone) here soon. Also with winter being upon us, it is just difficult to be super productive and motivated when the weather is so dark and cold. I just had a planning meeting with Pam as well so get ready to get some good content in front of your face this February. And as usual if there is anything you’d like to see or hear about, please let me know and I’d be happy to do just that!

Hi! I'm Nora

I’m a stay-at-home wife & dog-mom. I began this blog ten years ago,  I couldn’t ignore that I felt a calling to help people find comfort, a sense of belonging or a place of community whenever they really needed it. » Read more about me here on my About page!

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