Sun shining over a range of mountains

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Discover this Principle

Explore the principle Life Is a Gift through this curated collection of resources.

Stories of Grateful Living

Iyore (I Return)

by Imuetinyan Ugiagbe
Here in our Stories of Grateful Living, we honor the voices of our community as…
inaki human postcard
Videos

Human Postcards #14 – Iñaki

by Human Postcards
Iñaki is an 8-year old boy from New Zealand. Here is his one minute response…

Life Is a Gift

Grateful Living is fundamentally grounded in the invitation to see life itself as a gift: an unexpected gift that you did not need to do anything to earn or deserve, but is coming to you — wrapped in a wide range of packaging. In every moment that you are alive, this life has been given to you.

So often we walk through our days feeling that there is something missing, and that we need more. We may not know exactly what that more is, but we know we long to feel filled up and fully alive. We want to be connected to what really matters. We want to belong. And we want to feel chosen. And yet, during all of these moments, there is life again holding its steady commitment out to us. Offering yet another moment. Another opportunity. Life keeps on extending itself, even when we walk past it waiting for a better invitation, something wrapped in different paper or a bigger box.

It is enough to be grateful for the next breath.

Br. David-Steindl Rast

With perspective, you see life as an extraordinary privilege, and one not to squander. It is the gift that brings everything else with it. And in every moment it awaits your engagement. Accepting this invitation, you become a partner with your unfolding moments in creating the unrepeatable miracle that is, in the words of poet Mary Oliver, “your one wild and precious life.”

Grateful Living reminds us that by seeing life as a gift we acquire a consistent and sufficient baseline for gratefulness. It is the beginning, and will be the end, of the most powerful practice we have. Life itself is our most reliable cause for gratefulness. We honor life with our wholehearted presence and appreciation by repeatedly saying yes to the gift that it is.

Excerpted from Wake Up Grateful: The Transformative Practice of Taking Nothing for Granted

Wake Up Grateful

The Transformative Practice of Taking Nothing for Granted

What does it mean to truly live gratefully, every day? Wake Up Grateful unlocks the path to recognizing abundance in every moment, and gives readers the tools to bring this transformational shift in perspective into their daily lives.

Digging Deeper

For continued exploration of experiencing life as a gift, dive into these additional resources.

Arrangement of gratitude reflection cards, phone, and glasses on black background
Practices

7-Day Gratitude Journey

by The Grateful Living Team
This guided journey — created in collaboration with our partners at Holstee and hosted on…
Music

Mantragold – “Gratitude”

by Mantragold
We invite you to take a moment to enjoy the sounds and sights of this…
Videos

Just Be Nice

by Green Renaissance
“You are walking this life. Make sure that you leave beautiful steps behind,” says Morné…
Videos

The Beauty of Living

by Green Renaissance
In this short film, Annie Norgarb exemplifies waking up grateful through her reverence for ordinary…
Stories of Grateful Living

Iyore (I Return)

by Imuetinyan Ugiagbe
Here in our Stories of Grateful Living, we honor the voices of our community as…
woman in beige sweater standing by brown foliage
Articles

Waking Up to What Is: Grateful in the Face of It All

by Kristi Nelson
The ability to wake up to another new day — one with which we will…

The Way of Grateful Living

Grateful Living is supported by guiding pathways, daily practices, habits of mind,
and behaviors that make us more appreciative and available to life. 

These Five Guiding Principles are touchstones to support your practice:

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Life is a Gift

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Everything is Surprise

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The Ordinary Is Extraordinary

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Appreciation Is Generative

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Love is transformative