Thoughtful Threes: 3 Gratitudes, 3 Essentials, 3 Breaths
Updated: Jan 19, 2021
As you know, there is power in groups of three and building a platform on which to grow your passions each day is no exception.
In this busy day in age, we often have so much going on - within us and around us - that it's hard to find focus in our hectic lives. Research shows that taking a moment during your day, preferably in the morning, can help to centre yourself and move with grace and confidence through whatever life throws in your direction. This moment could be as long as an hour or as short as five minutes. During this time of calm, you can do a number of things, such as: meditate, reflect, draw, write, sing, stretch, do yoga, practise mindfulness, have a bath, light exercise, or - truly - anything that brings you joy and allows you to refocus on what you feel is important in life.
No matter what you are doing, there are three things that everyone’s morning moment should include in order to achieve the next level of personal progress (LINK to The Three Ps of Progress): Gratitudes, Essentials, and Breaths.
Being grateful seems self-explanatory but oftentimes people confuse simple thank-yous for true, heartfelt gratitude. Using your manners when someone is generous or kind to you is fantastic and I’m happy that this type of recognition still perseveres in our ever-growing, me-centred society but the type of gratitude I am referring to in this time of reflection goes a bit deeper. It involves more than a word or kind gesture but rather a feeling or sentiment experienced within one's self. You can be grateful for your health, your relationships, your children, and even for that tiny flower you saw poking through the concrete that made you smile the other day. Absolutely anything.
While taking a moment to organize your day, make a list of - at least - three things you are truly grateful for. If you have time, really reflect on why you are thankful for these things and go through the full measure of actually thanking the universe for all that you have. We are truly blessed.
Getting things done throughout the day when your list is a mile long - and growing - can be difficult. It's easy to become overwhelmed and lost in the struggles of ‘doing it all.’ Many people report overwhelm paralysis when things just become too much to handle. This is the condition during which a person feels so burdened with thoughts and things to do that nothing winds up getting done.
One way to circumvent this paralysis is to come up with your Essential Three. The initial set up of this process may look different for each person but, in general, it involves acknowledging all that you need to do, mentally or through a fun written method called Braindump. Your task is to find the three things in that chaos that must get done today and then do them. Now, be reasonable. If you have a big project that requires multiple steps to complete then each of those steps counts as an item in your essential three, not the project in its entirety.
Now that your list only includes three things, it becomes more manageable and completely doable. When you get them done, reward yourself. Do a little dance, pat yourself on the back, give a holla to yourself and aim to do it again tomorrow.
Breathing is integral to finding focus, balance, and calm. Even children's shows, like Sesame Street, have implemented the idea of “belly breathing” in their strategies for finding calm in potentially stressful situations.
The idea here is to be conscious of the breath that is entering and exiting your body. Breath deeply, at least three times, all the way into your stomach. Feel the air enter your body and you can even watch as your belly distends with its fullness. Be mindful of the process, how your body is working for you and how the air filling your lungs is feeding your body with the oxygen it needs to thrive. Also, don't forget to acknowledge your connection with nature as you do your three breaths. Each time you exhale, your body is distributing carbon dioxide into the air which, in turn, is consumed by plants and all forms of greenery which they return to you as oxygen to complete the circle.
The Thoughtful Threes are an integral part of making your morning routine more purposeful and helps you to journey toward the fulfillment of realizing The Three Ps of Progress. Once you are able to combine the thoughtful threes with the 3 Ps of Progress, you will find yourself making leaps and bounds in not only completing your daily goals but also having a sense of fulfillment within yourself as you do so.