I love the month of May. I was born in May and feel special kinship with this month, always felt lucky being born in this month because of the natural beauty it brings in.

The flowers are blossoming, the earth is greening.
Nature comes alive after the barrenness of winter. I love to sit outside at dawn with my mug of coffee and listen to the riotous birdsong, sniff the subtle fragrances in the air and watch the budding trees unfold.

Being surrounded by so much sensual beauty I can practically feel the earth make its transition from the darkness of winter to summer brightness.  With it I feel an upwelling of profound gratitude that winter is over!!!!….. and for life, my family, my friends, my clients and last but not least my beloved fur babies.

Focusing on those things that I am grateful for, I feel myself relax.  Such a different effect from when I focus on my “to do” list or future goals, which has a very different effect on my body.  I actually feel myself settle into the present moment.  It’s physical; I sit back in my chair and feel myself soften…..in contrast to straining forward, or “efforting”, towards some future goal.

We know from research that the practice of gratitude has not only mental and emotional benefits but also physical ones. When body and mind are congruent, in the same place at the same time, we relax. We secrete hormones that create a peaceful sensation. Our bodies let go.

Try to elicit those feelings right now. Close your eyes and picture something you are grateful for.  Notice the shift in your body. Perhaps your stomach relaxes, your breathing deepens. Maybe your shoulders drop and face relaxes.  All is well.

Make time to focus on all you have, every day…. do so every hour, every minute. Make it part of your day. Journal about what you value and appreciate in your life, just jot down words or phrases in your calendar (I still prefer paper!), make it real.  Talk about it over dinner. Focus on it as you fall asleep.

What are you most grateful for this minute? Pause and allow yourself to be bathed in those blessings. It’s so simple and so effective.

Just do it.