Natural Gratitude

Mountains in March

“love the world as your self
then you can care for all things”
~Lao Tzu

There is an earthy Celtic tradition that I enjoy very much. This tradition is simple, healing and fun. It involves speaking or singing your love and appreciation directly to the trees and flowers, birds and animals that you encounter in nature.

For example, I might go out into my backyard and whisper to the pine trees and tell them just how lovely their green branches are today. Or I might smile at the lavender bush and praise its scent. I might stop as I’m walking the dog, and thank the sky for the amazing cloud shapes floating by. If I’m feeling especially exuberant today, I could even go so far as to sing my gratitude to the trees and flowers and sky.  Or create a little poem about their beauty and effect on me.

This ancient Celtic practice gives me a simple way to honor and acknowledge my relationship with nature. Our human lives are interwoven with the natural world in a multitude of ways. But I often forget just how important nature is to my life.  This gratitude practice helps me to remember.

“Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet
and the winds long to play with your hair.”

~Khalil Gibran

Gratitude Walk

Below I share yet another way to shift into a naturally grateful state:

Take a walk in a beautiful natural space.  As you walk, just notice what is beautiful around you. Whenever you notice a beautiful object, silently say thank you to it; thank each beautiful tree and flower and blade of grass for existing and brightening up your life.

Can you come up with 10 things to be grateful for? 25? 50? Make your list silently. And then notice what happens to your mood when you practice gratitude.

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