start monday with gratitude

week 11

Welcome to Week 11, lovely soul.

Below you'll find the video and video transcript introducing you to this week's quote and musings.

Scroll further and you'll discover this week's daily exercises, high vibe tune, and downloadable wallpapers.

Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it

William Arthur Ward

video transcript

Have you bought the perfect gift for someone, something you know they’ll be super excited to receive?

It’s your best friend’s very special birthday coming up and you want to buy them the perfect present, something that shows them how much you value your friendship, how much you appreciate them being part of your life, how much you love them.

You scroll the internet for ideas, you ask other mutual friends for suggestions, you spend ages thinking about what the perfect gift for them would be.

Then one day you’re walking down the street and you’re not actively looking for their gift. However, you pass a shop window, and something catches your eye. You are stopped in your tracks, your feet glued to the ground unable to take another step forward because what has caught your eye is, you know, the most perfect gift you could ever get for your best friend’s special birthday.

In that instant your heart skips a beat, you feel the blood pumping excitedly through your veins, and you hear singing voices celebrating in your head. This is it! This is the most perfect present!

So, you rush into the shop immediately to purchase it.

Walking home, carrying the present in its bag, beautifully wrapped by the shop assistant, you feel elated, you feel like you’re walking on air, you feel ecstatic. You couldn’t have thought of a more perfect present for your friend.

The evening of your best friend’s special birthday arrives and you, along with other friends, have been invited to join in the celebration.

You spend ages getting ready for the party, you can feel the excitement growing. You imagine your friend receiving your gift, ripping open the beautiful wrapping paper, and squealing with delight at the most wonderful present they have received from you. You just know they’re going to love it.

Your excitement rises, you’re aglow with anticipation, you cannot wait to give your best friend the most perfect present. The time is almost here.

Leaving the house, you take a moment to admire the present… how beautiful it looks in its wrapping. Again, you feel a wave of excitement wash over you.

Soon after you arrive at your best friend’s house and they’re so happy to see you. You see other friends there and everyone’s having a wonderful time. The atmosphere is amazing. Everyone is smiling and having fun. Your best friend is loving opening all the generous gifts everyone has brought and you’re getting ready to step forward to give your friend your gift, the most perfect gift, the gift that will make your friend squeal with delight.

And… you stop. You have the most perfect gift that could bring such joy and happiness to your friend, it’s wrapped beautifully. Yet you decide not to give it.

Seriously? Would you ever do that? Would you ever miss out on an opportunity to bring such joy and happiness to your best, your closest friend?

Of course you wouldn’t. That would be completely senseless.

All that joy, all that happiness, all that excitement… all boxed up and never shared.

And yet that’s what so many people do when it comes to gratitude. Gratitude is a gift that should be given, that should be shared, not wrapped up in pretty paper and then hidden. It’s something that brings both the giver and the receiver joy and happiness. It’s senseless to not share it, to not give it, to not express it.

daily gratitude practice

Today you’re going to treat yourself.

It can be anything, small or large, but it has to be something you love to eat, have, or experience.

Something that, you know, will bring you such joy.

Then go out and buy it. Relish it. Enjoy it.

If, for example, it is a bar of creamy, thick, indulgent chocolate, will you savour every tiny bite, eating it slowly, letting it melt in your mouth? Or will you gobble it down greedily, enjoying the feeling of pure satisfaction when it’s finished?

Whatever you choose to do, whatever feels most enjoyable to you, that’s what you do.

No judgement. No regrets. No guilt. Just sheer pleasure.

How do you feel?

How much enjoyment did you receive?

How grateful are you for treating yourself today?

Shall we repeat yesterday’s experiment?

Even with that very suggestion that we might repeat it, can you feel your excitement grow?

Today I invite you to choose a treat for yourself. Again, it can be anything, small or large, but it has to be something you love to eat, have, or experience.

If you wish, you can choose the same thing you chose yesterday. It’s up to you.

Now. Go to the shop or store where you can purchase it.

Stand in front of your product for a minute or so.

Lift it up, touch it, feel it, smell it (if applicable).

Really ignite that same feeling of excitement you experienced yesterday.

Now set the product back down and walk out of the shop or store.

How do you feel?

Having built up all the excitement, having touched, held smelled the treat of your choice, how does it feel to have walked away form it and denied yourself its pleasure?

Why tempt yourself to something so wonderful and then deny yourself it?

Why feel grateful for something but deny your soul the joy of expressing your gratitude?

Today you’ll need the help of someone who knows you really well, someone who knows how to make you smile, what you enjoy. It could be a partner, a family member, or a best friend.

Choose carefully.

Choose the one person who, if you asked them to buy you something you would love to receive, they would pick the perfect gift. Now do just that. Ask them to buy you something that you will love to receive.

You might want to give them some money to do so.

The gift doesn’t have to be big, nor does it need to cost much.

Before they give you the gift, they have bought for you, however, there is one stipulation: it needs to come wrapped as a present. They can ask the shop assistant to wrap it for them or they can do it themselves. But it must be handed to you wrapped like a beautiful present.

When they’re ready to hand it to you, ask them to, first, take some time to tease you about your gift a little. Ask them to give you some hints as to what it might be without telling you what it is. The aim is to get your excitement rising, to get your curiosity peaking.

When they’ve finished teasing you, they can hand you the gift.

But you cannot open it. You cannot see what’s inside. You cannot enjoy what’s inside.

How does that feel?

Do you not just want to rip open the paper to reveal the gift hidden inside? Of course you do! But you can’t, so how do you feel?

Is there any point in wrapping a gift, giving it and then the receiver can’t enjoy it? Then what’s the point of feeling grateful for something but not expressing it.

We’ve all received a gift that we didn’t really want. Perhaps it was that pair of woolly socks at Christmas from Aunt Jane. Or perhaps it was that bar of tee-tree soap for your birthday from Great Auntie Ginny.

How did you react when you received that gift?

How did receiving that gift make you feel? Flat? Deflated? Disappointed? Frustrated?

Do you think the gift-giver would have wanted you to feel that way?

Every gift is chosen thoughtfully.

Perhaps your Great Auntie Ginny heard that you enjoy using essential oils and thought this would be a beautiful gift for you. Perhaps you’re going skiing soon and your Aunt Jane thought the socks would be perfect for keeping your feet warm.

Thinking back to those gifts, now having more insight into the thinking behind them and the thoughtfulness of the gift-giver, do you feel more grateful for them?

Sometimes we need to extend our perspective and see something from the eyes of the giver, whether that giver is a person, the Universe or, indeed, the creator of our own reality, ourselves.

When we change our perspective, it makes it easier to express gratitude for the more challenging gifts that we receive.

As a child I was always taught to say, ‘thank you’ and express my gratitude for anything I received, whether I liked the gift or not.

I never fully grasped the importance of this life lesson until I had nieces and nephews and was on the other side of the gift-giving, the giver, not the receiver.

When you give a gift to someone, no matter how small, there is nothing more beautiful, nothing more heart-warming than for them to honour the thought you placed into the gift by thanking you, whether they loved the gift or not.

Whatever gift you receive in life, from another person, from yourself, or from the Universe, take the time to express gratitude for it, whether it is something you have been wishing for or whether it is something that has come out of the blue and doesn’t, perhaps, initially seem or feel positive.

Sometimes, children in their sheer (and sometimes brutal) honesty will receive a gift, decide they don’t like it, and toss it aside, right in front of the gift-giver.

Have you ever given someone a gift and it’s been rejected in your presence? I have… and it wasn’t a child.

Or have you ever had a dream, something you want to achieve in life, and you’ve been all excited and shared it with someone who starts to question the reality of the dream, poo-poos it, or simply takes a pin and pops your dream bubble?

If you have experienced either of these scenarios, can you remember the emotions you felt?

If you haven’t experienced either of these, can you imagine how you would feel?

That’s how a person or the Universe feels every time you’re giving something, and you don’t express gratitude for it.

And when you regularly fail to express gratitude for the things that come your way, what do you think the gift-giver will do? They’ll stop giving you things, right?

Do you want the Universe to stop sending you blessing and miracles every day, no matter how large or small they may be?

Take some time today expressing gratitude for all the gifts you received in life, either from another person, from yourself, or from the Universe.

How many of these gifts did you forget about until you started this exercise?

How many of these gifts are you expressing gratitude for, for the first time?

and let's not forget...

This week's high vibe tune reminds us to celebrate and party

have gratitude wherever you go...

... with this week's gratitude quote wallpaper.

Note: details of how to download this week's wallpaper is provided below.

“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it” ~ William Arthur Ward





how to download your wallpaper

Before copying one of the pictures below, you'll want to quickly check your screen settings because the worst thing you can do is use a wallpaper with an aspect ratio that differs from the aspect ratio of your screen.

The aspect ratio of a rectangle is simply the proportion between width and height. The most common are 16:9, 16:10 and 4:3. And it will be for these 3 sizes that I shall provide you with your free wallpaper.

To find your screen resolution follow this basic guide. Steps for your computer may vary slightly but I hope this will give you some guidance:

  • Right-click the desktop and select Display settings.
  • Scroll down until you see "Resolution" (you may have to choose an "Advanced" option)
  • To find your aspect ratio, divide the width over the height. For example, if my resolution is 1920 x 1080 then I would divide 1920 over 1080 to get 1.778, which indicates a 16:9 resolution. Similarly, 1.6 indicated 16:10 and 1.333 indicates 4:3
  • When you've calculated your screen's aspect ratio, go to the picture below that matches that size
  • Right click on the picture and select "Set as Desktop Background"
  • Choose whether to "Fill", "Fit", or "Stretch" your picture - if you've chosen the right size "Fit" will be your best option
  • Select "Set Desktop Background" and you're done

  • First, save the wallpaper image to your phone by pressing your finger on the wallpaper image and hold down on it until you see a menu.
  • From here, click the “Save image” tab, and it will begin downloading.
  • The next step is to set this saved image as your wallpaper by pressing and holding a blank area on your screen (meaning where no apps are placed), and home screen options will appear.
  • Select 'add wallpaper' and choose whether the wallpaper is intended for 'Home screen', 'Lock screen', or 'Home and lock screen'.
  • Another set of options will appear where you can choose where the photo you would like to use will be coming from, namely the Gallery.
  • If necessary, crop the image to a suitable size. Once satisfied, simply click 'Done'.

  • First, save the wallpaper image to your phone by pressing your finger on the wallpaper image and hold down for about 2 seconds until a menu appears.
  • From here, click “Save Image“, and it will begin downloading.
  • The next step is to set this saved image as your wallpaper by, first, going to the 'Photos' app and selecting the wallpaper photo you've saved there.
  • Click on the share icon on the lower left corner of the screen, then select 'Use as Wallpaper'.
  • Then choose to set the photo as either the lock screen, home screen or both.