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Do you have a practice for dealing with daily stress? We thought we’d share a simple and surprisingly effective exercise you can do each day that will not only boost your spirits, but lighten the perceived burden of “the daily grind.” No running shoes required! You can do it without breaking a sweat, right from the comfort of your car, your desk, or even the line at Starbucks.

It sounds simple, but it’s quite powerful: Each day, think of five things you’re grateful for. They don’t have to be big things. In fact, it’s great to start with the little things. It helps get you in the flow.

Start with one or two basic things you take for granted, for example: “I’m grateful for a hot shower in the morning.” Or: “I’m grateful for a safe neighborhood.”

Come up with five new things each time you practice. You might find this challenging at first. There should be a little struggle, but push through it. “I’m grateful for the smile of the guy at the bagel shop.” Or: “I’m grateful for my family dinner on Sundays.”

It might seem silly at first, but you’ll notice that the more you express your gratitude, the more you’ll connect to a general feeling of benevolence for others and well-being. Really take a moment for each simple gratitude to sink in. Visualize what you’re grateful for and recall experiencing it.

This gratitude exercise connects you to the world in a positive way. It makes the trivial annoyances in life sting less, and reminds you to note what it is in the world you truly appreciate. When your focus shifts to gratitude, your attitude improves.

Give it a try this week and see what you think. Waiting in line, stuck in traffic, killing time between appointments… they’re all great windows to practice a little gratitude.

Sometimes our clients ask us how we keep our cool when dealing with a difficult real estate deal. Well, this is one of our tricks to keep everything in perspective. If you’re looking for a stress-free home buying or selling experience, we can help: Kevin and Jennifer Hanley, REALTORS http://www.HanleyHomeTeam.com or http://www.HanleyShortSales.com

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