It’s summer break time!
It can be a huge relief to have the day-to-day pressures of the school year behind you. At the same time, summer’s looser structure can sometimes leave you feeling lonely or out of sorts. The Erika’s Lighthouse community knows that positive mental health practices are important year-round (and not just when students are in school).
So, let’s commit to connecting here this summer to carry the spirit and the positive mental health impact of the Erika’s Lighthouse Positivity Pledge through the summer – together!
Introducing the first Positivity Practice of 2021: Gratitude
Let’s kick this off with a super simple and super positive-impact practice.
You likely already know why gratitude is so powerful – building a habit of seeking the good makes us more aware of how much good there really is! That builds our positive emotions and – with practice – helps us cultivate the ability to conjure up those positive emotions when we need them.
To be clear, depression is not simply ‘a bad mood’ and we know that telling someone to ‘just be happy’ instead is more harmful than helpful. But check this out: recent research suggests that the effects of a regular gratitude practice can help reduce symptoms of clinical depression.
So, give yourself this gift!
Here are a few fun and easy ways to build a gratitude habit. Pick and choose what works for you.
- Set a daily reminder on your phone to take just a few quick minutes to recall the things that went well that day (even – and maybe especially – on really tough days!)
- Keep a note by your bed that prompts you to set a seek-the-good intention each morning
- Write your daily ‘goods’ in a notebook or journal and take an extra few minutes each week to review previous posts. Aim for at least 3 each day (and never worry about repeating any!)
- Not a pen-and-paper type? Create an anonymous Twitter account to use just to post the things you’re grateful for each day
- Text someone a thank you message (this one offers double positive impact because you know it’s going to make that person’s day)
Tell us about your successes cultivating a gratitude practice
We can teach and learn from each other as we go. Interested in being a guest blogger for Erika’s Lighthouse? You can share your process and results (either with your byline or anonymously) with our caring support community.
Share what you are grateful for!
Erika’s Lighthouse is grateful that you are a part of this concerned and compassionate community. Leave a comment below or send a message to Lisa@ErikasLighthouse.org.
And keep coming back to the Erika’s Lighthouse blog throughout the summer for more ways to connect and more simple but high-impact Positivity Practices!
Guest Author: PIKWrite