Feed Your Soul with Kim

63_Gratitude as a Practice

November 17, 2021 Kim McLaughlin Episode 63
Feed Your Soul with Kim
63_Gratitude as a Practice
Show Notes Transcript

Gratitude is not just for Thanksgiving time, although it is talked about a lot during the Thanksgiving time. 

In this episode, we explore why having gratitude as a regular practice is so important. Gratitude is a driving force for self-love (one of the 6 core components to Feed Your Soul)!

We can get so caught up in looking at food over the holidays and I want to take a pause to discuss another important component in all our lives. Gratitude can increase all the good feelings to make the day better. 

Join us on this weeks’, Feed Your Soul with Kim Podcast we are looking at gratitude as a way of being not just at Thanksgiving. In this podcast we will explore:

  • Why is gratitude important?
  • What happens when we do not focus on gratitude?
  • What can you expect when gratitude becomes a way of life? 


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Check out last weeks Feed Your Soul with  Kim podcast: 

Intuitive Eating at Thanksgiving

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Kim McLaughlin, MA

Kim McLaughlin is a licensed Marriage and Family Therapist, inspirational coach, speaker, and writer. She helps people who feel frustrated overwhelmed and overloaded, and it shows up in overeating. She has a Master of Arts Degree in Clinical Psychology. Kim is a certified Intuitive Eating Counselor, and she assists people to gain peace with food. 

We would love to get your feedback on this show and let us know what you would like to hear in upcoming shows. Email us at info@FeedYourSoulUnlimited.com


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Hi there, this is Kim and I wanted to talk to you about ways that we have to support you. I know when you're listening to this podcast that you are wondering about emotional eating and wondering what you can do differently with food and I want to have you go get the EMI and emotional eater quiz. This quiz is so helpful to help you determine what's going on for you how food is affecting you, and then what you can do about it. Go to my website, feed your soul unlimited.com and click on the link for that EMI emotional eater quiz. I know this quiz will help you get on the right track with food Welcome to the feed your soul with Kim podcast. I am Kim McLaughlin your host I help people have peace with food and to feed their soul. I want to help you put food in its proper places nourishment and increase your satisfaction in life. I am a psychotherapist, a blogger, author, speaker, and I focus this podcast on giving you ways to understand food differently and help you in your relationship with food. You can find out more at feed your soul unlimited.com Hey, this is Kim. And in this week's feed your soul with Kim podcast we are talking about something very timely. But actually I think it's also timed less. Because we're going to talk about gratitude and why it is so important. We're coming upon the time of the holidays and Thanksgiving. And that's generally the time that we do talk about being thankful being grateful, really observing the things that are good in our lives. And I'm I am recording this at the time of the holiday. But I'm actually going to push this out later in next year also. So you can begin to remember what gratitude is like. So I think gratitude and thankfulness are our qualities that I want to have throughout the whole year, not just during the holiday. But Thanksgiving time is a great time to remember it and kind of plant that seed in our brain that that this is something we want to look at more the first place we want to start with why gratitude, why is it important is to talk about what is gratitude, and I looked it up in the handy dandy dictionary. And it said the gratitude is the quality of being thankful, readiness to show appreciation for and return kindness. So it's about that quality of being thankful. And I think we could use grateful and thankful kind of interchangeably. So you'll hear me talk about them kind of as equal concepts. And it's showing appreciation and returning kindness. And I think as you as we go through this podcast, you're going to hear about how it isn't. It isn't always that we want to feel or do feel grateful for what's going on in our life. And I'm going to make the case for even if you don't feel positive about what's going on, to show an appreciation and thankfulness and gratitude for what's going on actually increases your capacity for more things coming in your life that you feel positive about. And we'll get to that more as we go through this through this podcast. So why is gratitude important? It, it Sousou it, it can really make you feel good, when you're stressed when things are going what we think is wrong, being grateful for what you have, can sue you and actually make you feel positive. Gratitude also focuses you if it focuses you on what you're happy about or what you like. So I think of this idea that I could see the thing you know, that concept of Is the glass half empty, or is it half full. So we could go with the half empty and have that kind of negative idea or that kind of less than idea, or we could also see it as half full. And that's what I think about when I think about gratitude is that it's mean looking for what in this situation is half full. What in this situation is something that I liked and focus on that rather than on the part that I don't like and that is one of the great aspects of gratitude is it focuses you in on what is good about what's going on. The other thing about gratitude is that it energizes you if it makes me happy about you, but it makes me feel better, it makes me feel more enlivened more in life, because I'm focusing on positive on what's right, which gives me more energy to do more things, which means that I am getting more the joy of life going on inside of myself, when I talk about, you know, there are so many other reasons to focus on gratitude than the few that I've given you. And then there's that opposite thing of what happens if we don't focus on gratitude, if we're not grateful for what's going on in our life, there's actually some things that happen that are not really good. One of the things that happens when we do not focus on what we're grateful for, is that we don't feel good about ourselves and kind of this poor self image. I was thinking of kind of like, how we can think badly about how we look or our body image or the food that we ate, or our weight and not feel good about ourselves. And that leads us down a path of kind of spiraling down and spiraling out of control. And what we know is that that's one of the things that leads us to over eat is that feeling of poor sleep, poor self image, poor self worth? Remember, we've talked before about the six components of feeding your soul. The first is physical, then we have emotional, mental lifestyle, mindfulness, and then the last one. And I think the most important one is self worth, self image, self esteem, that whole idea about how we think about ourselves. And when we don't focus on what we're grateful for, when we don't focus on what's right. We tend to feel really bad about ourselves, and bad about how we look and bad about how we feel about ourselves. The other thing that happens when we don't focus on gratitude is we have a difficult time letting things go, letting go something that is that we might want to forgive, or we might want to kind of not necessarily forget, but forgive. What I know is that when we're in that practice of forgiveness, that we are able to let things go easier. And I know that there are a lot of bad things that go on, there are things that are hard to forgive, when somebody hits your car on purpose, or there's some kind of violence or there's verbal altercations or people inflicting pain? Yes, yes, yes, I know that there are times when it's really hard to forgive. And what we really want then is we tend to want somebody to pay the price for what they've done to have some kind of consequence for the damage that they've caused us. What happens is, is that, that ends up kind of ricocheting back to us making us feel upset and, and unhappy about life because of what other people have done. And you know, I'm, I'm a proponent of therapy and of getting help for things that are really tough. And that would be the thing I would recommend is that if you do have difficulty forgiving people, or if the things feel unforgiveable, then that's the time to talk to somebody about what's going on. And what I like to do in in the therapy that I do with people is to also look at is what we're grateful for. And what we can say this other thing is really positive, even though this other piece is pretty negative. The other thing that happens when we don't focus on gratitude is we feel actually, it's not a feeling, we think negatively. That's that third component I talked about, about the thoughts, and we can have a negative mindset. And so when we're not grateful for what's going on, we tend to see things negatively. Once again, we can get back to that idea of the glass half empty or or half full. And when it's half empty, that's that's synonymous with that negative. That negative mindset. When we're in that negative mindset there, there can be feelings of bitterness, ideas of poor self image and just not feeling good in our lives and not feeling happy with what's going on around us. When we talk about having gratitude. There are lots of ways to do that. And I'm going to talk more about that next week in my podcast, about some gratitude challenges about different ways to challenge yourself to getting into more gratitude. And so we'll go into that next time. I want to I want you to think about how would you enter into more gratitude if you were going to see that for yourself and How might you see, see more things that you're grateful for, I like, just spontaneously going through my day and and I have this thing that I do. Like when I find a penny on the ground, I always pick it up because a penny is never too small, I am open to any amounts of money that come into my life. And so I will bend down and pick up a penny. And I always say thank you, I always say thank you to spirit to God to universal source. Because I'm so grateful that there's plenty for me to have. And I want to always honor when I get something, I also make sure that I have gratitude for people and their kindness and what they give to me and I make it a point with my husband, he takes the garbage out every week, it's super lovely. It's one of his love languages is to make sure he is of service. And so he makes sure the garbage goes out on time, every week, no matter what you can always expect that he does that. And I'll say to him, thank you for taking out the garbage. And I think that we can tend to not say thank you and not be grateful for what people do. Because we think, Oh, well, they're supposed to do that they're supposed to take out the garbage. That's his job. He's supposed to do that. But I'm pretty thankful. I'm extremely thankful, actually that he does that because it means that job is getting done. And so I will say thank you for that. I remember just the other day, he went grocery shopping, and he made sure that he got a list and that he did everything, got everything that we needed. And once again, I think it was later in that day, I just said thank you for getting the for doing the groceries. And I thank him. So I want you to think about this, sometimes what women will do is will think that we don't say thank you for these kind of things, because he should just do it. Or it should just be something that he does. Or if I say thank you, it makes it sound like it was my job. And he took something that was my job. And that is couldn't be further from the truth. When I say thank you, it's me noticing a kindness that you did a kindness that you did, even if it was something that you would have done anyway. And it makes me feel good. And it always softens relationships, giving a heartfelt thank you showing gratitude really increases the positive feelings you have towards each other. So I really encourage that one of the things I really encourage is to spend time saying thank you. And another way of doing that is not just saying it, but by actually writing thank you notes, we have a rule in our house that we write thank you notes when people give us especially for birthdays and anniversaries. And when people give us stuff, we write a thank you note. And that has been a really great kind of tradition that we have actually I did that when I was a kid, my mom would have us write handwritten thank you notes. And I know that kids these days, tend to write texts. And I just want to give a shout out to writing a thank you note to somebody. And truthfully, I don't do it as often as I would like to. And 100% I am so grateful when somebody writes me, I think you know, it can be so little of you know, thank you, Kim for doing this thing and their signature. But I know how much it takes how much energy it takes to send out that note. And so that's my other push for you is that start sending out a thank you note make that be something that you do that is just showing in the expression to somebody that you appreciate what they did. I've like I said I've wanted to do more of it. And maybe that will be my my gratitude challenge for myself is to write more thank you notes. Because I sure love getting them and I know it feels good to write them too. Because then I'm what I am doing then is I'm focused on what I like what I'm grateful for rather than the negative once again, seeing it half full or half empty. If I'm focused on how it's half full, then I'm focused on the positive and that's where I want my mind to be more because when I'm focused more on the positive, I feel more positive and I feel better. And that is what I want for myself when I'm talking about these different ideas about gratitude, why we have gratitude, some ideas about how you can show gratitude is that it can then become a way of life and it becomes more this positive way of being and it, it helps you and the other person in the long run, it really is another way of transforming a relationship. And I was writing down that it heals relationships, it heals the some, any negativity that's going on anything that you don't like, right? What do we do when we're in relationship will tend to focus on things that we don't like, when we're at work, we tend to focus on things that aren't right. There's a lot of reasons why we do that. But it really is this kind of human thing that we do. And I want to challenge you to look at your relationships, at home, at work with your family, with your friends, to see what works, what is good, I promise you, even in the most difficult relationships, there's something good going on, and be grateful for that. And, and notice it, one of the things that happens is, is that I think these things go on that are positive that we feel grateful for, but we don't really pay attention to it. And this is what I want to encourage you to do is to pay attention to it. So gratitude heals relationships, it also deepens relationships, because people feel better about you, when they see that you noticed, when they see that you've noticed something that you like about what they've done. It's a very memorable kind of experience to have somebody show gratitude. And so it heals relationships, it deepens them, it also strengthens them, it becomes a different way of being with each other. And that's what I want to encourage you to due. As we go through this holiday time, I am going to encourage you to take beyond Thanksgiving, the idea of showing gratitude. And it first means thinking about it, noticing it and then saying something about it and either saying it to yourself about what you're grateful for in your life, but also saying it to other people because that's that begins to be that kind of golden cord between you and other people that makes life feel more positive. So that is my really superstrong push for gratitude and living in that state of gratitude as a way of being Lastly, I want to encourage you to pick up our ebook on gratitude and there's a journal attached to it in the show notes. You can find the link to sign up to get that free ebook. It's going to be really helpful for you to focus a little bit further in about gratitude. This is Kim McLaughlin, thank you for listening to the feed your soul with Kim podcast. I encourage you to share this information with your friends and share this podcast with your friends. We'd love to have more people listening and talking about what we do. Thanks a lot. Bye bye