If you want to live a more purposeful life, where you are making better choices and creating greater happiness, second to starting your day right (see Morning Pages) is ending your day right.
You would be surprised at what happens when you take just a few minutes (and I am serious here, this tool takes just a few minutes) to bring closure to your day. Today, I would like to share with you what I do as soon as I get into bed.
It has helped me achieve the following:
- Better sleep
- Greater peace and tranquility
- A more positive disposition
- A better ability to forgive (though I am still working on this Achilles Heel)
- More energy
- A greater ability to find answers and creative solutions to the problems I encounter inmy day to day
And it also supports an activity that is proven to improve our health in many ways, including our immune system (yes! to getting sick less), and blood pressure, among other health benefits.
The best part? It only takes 2 minutes and 26 seconds (that’s how long it took me the last time I did it).
A little bit of tough love here: If you do not have 2 minutes and 26 seconds to spare for something that will give you all of the above (and more), bigger problems exist in your relationship with wellness. Email me back, because I would be happy to talk more.
What is this 2 minute and 26 second thing I do right when I get in bed?
Writing a gratitude list.
Almost every evening, I get into bed and reach for a pen and journal on my night stand. I open to a blank page and I make a list of all of the things that happened on that day for which I am grateful for. I usually write a vertical list that ends when the page ends (which usually leads me to write 25 things I am grateful for on that day).
Recently, I went to bed and wrote the following down as what I was grateful for on that day:
- A really pleasant conversation with a former boss
- My son
- My husband
- A delicious salad I had for lunch
- My mother
- My phone
- My home
- A good book I had read
- Having the ability to read
- The hot shower I took in the morning (especially since it was cold and rainy outside and there are many who do not have this option)
- The bedsheets that I was in
- Being able to watch my favorite TV show
- The breakfast that I ate
- A particular friend I spoke to
- The computer I own
- A conference I was going to
- The lunch I ate
- The ability to give love
- The ability to receive love
- My ability to write
- The sweater I wore on that day
- The fact that I washed my hair and how nice it is to have clean hair
- The comfortable rug that is next to my bed
Start really simple. Maybe you are grateful for a cookie you had as a snack. Then expand on it; you might realize you are grateful to have the ability to taste, grateful to have the money to purchase the cookie, etc. The simpler you are in doing this exercise, the better. Through simplicity you will see how much you actually have today. And this will not only help you have better sleep, but also greater peace and tranquility, more positivity, and more energy, among much more. And guess what? All of this allows you to actually create the life you want to live.
In the past, I have written about the incredible health benefits of gratitude and this exercise really helps you reap these. If you want to add to it just a bit more, follow your gratitude list with a gratitude meditation. It’s just 5 more minutes! Here is a guided one that is excellent, and which you can access with your email address:
I hope this article is of service to you.
Do you know someone who would benefit from writing a gratitude list? Share this article with them, or share it with your friends and family so they can also start creating the life they want to live. As always, leave a comment or question below, I would love to hear from you.