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Covid 19 Psychological Support: Mindfulness Practice: Expressing Gratitude

Support for HSE staff during the Covid 19 emergency

Mindfulness Practice - Expressing Gratitude

Involves: Sitting down and thinking about someone you are grateful for

Time it takes: Approx. 2 minutes and 30 seconds

Audience:  Busy colleagues who may need a moment to express gratitude to a loved one or foster support for their colleagues

Preparation: Practice reading the exercise once or twice through

What people say about this exercise:

Expressing gratitude is strongly associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences and deal with adversity. Therefore, this mindfulness practice is about expressing gratitude and kindness to others.

  1. To begin the practice, sit comfortably in your chair. Sit up straight taking a dignified posture. If it feels comfortable for you, gently close your eyes.
  2. Take a deep breath in and out
  3. When you’re ready, bring to mind someone in your life whom you feel gratitude for. Perhaps they have done something for you, or have supported you, or made a difference in your life. This may be a loved one, colleague or manager.
  4. Picture this person in your mind’s eye and acknowledge your gratitude for their presence in your life.
  5. You may begin to express gratitude for this person by opening your heart and sending them wishes of kindness and thanks.
  6. Quietly or in your head, say to yourself “thank you”...”thank you for being there for me”...”thank you for being a part of my life”.
  7. As you say these phrases, think about this person for a moment. Notice how your body feels when you think about this person. Check in with the physical sensations of your body using your breath as an anchor.
  8. Take a deep breath in and out
  9. Say to yourself again to this person  “thank you”...”thank you for being there for me”...”thank you for being a part of my life”.
  10. Take one more deep breath in and out
  11. The practice will come to a close in few moments.
  12. If you liked this practice, you can practice this any time throughout the day. This can be a powerful practice that helps us to connect to the many small things in life for which we can be grateful for.
  13. Plato once said “be kind for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle”
  14. When you are ready, take a final deep in and out lowly and gently open your eyes. 

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