Find a gratitude buddy! (Or I’ll play matchmaker)

cloud_puddle_1

Gratitude is a bit like finding the blue sky in the puddle.

We know gratitude practices work, right?

They train our minds to focus on what’s working, what’s beautiful + good, what delights us in the smallest of moments. They teach us that no matter what circumstances are unfolding in our lives, there is an opportunity to acknowledge what is nourishing us + what we can appreciate.

Even though I know this, it has taken me years to start (and stick with) a practice of my own. And I finally discovered what the missing ingredient was — a gratitude buddy!

I chose a friend who lives far away that I was eager to stay connected with. Since she is a new friend, it has been a really sweet way to grow our friendship. Choose someone you want to cultivate a deeper connection to (or a more regular connection). Anyone who is willing to play will be a good choice!

Here’s what our lists look like:

Today, I’m grateful for:
1. The magnolia tree outside my window that is blooming pink, even though it is winter.
2. For how I could see Ben with new eyes as he charmed everyone at the dentist office.
3. Fitting into my jeans.

Or…

Today, I’m grateful for:
1. A good night’s sleep.
2. Those little blue pills that seem to be working.
3. The guy I met who was walking his cat on a leash.

No preamble. No explanations. Just a simple list exchanged.

ben_nico_redwoods_hug

Sometimes I just send a picture.

P.S. I should also add that if someone forgets a day (or two or three) there is no need to apologize. The other person simply presses on and sends their list over. This helps me stay in the game, since I am usually the person who forgets!

P.P.S. Also, small detail, but we have been using the same email thread since day one entitled “gratitude.” We always respond to the same thread. This makes for an easy way to review the lists at some point.

Are you game?

If you need a buddy let me know. I’m happy to play matchmaker! (superherosf@gmail.com)

64 Comments

  1. Posted December 31, 2012 at 8:48 pm | Permalink

    Love this! What a great way to connect, and a gentle nudge for the practice of gratitude.

  2. Posted December 31, 2012 at 9:27 pm | Permalink

    Wonderful! I know someone who would be great for this – I love the idea of doing it with someone far away! Thanks, Andrea!

  3. Posted December 31, 2012 at 9:51 pm | Permalink

    One of my goals for 2013 is to start a gratitude journal. I never thought of sharing with a friend! This is such a great idea, thanks Andrea!

  4. Posted December 31, 2012 at 9:52 pm | Permalink

    Andrea: this is lovely…I have just the person in mind…thank you for the gentle nudge…

  5. Posted December 31, 2012 at 10:56 pm | Permalink

    I kept a gratitude journal for the longest time growing up (I was inspired by Oprah). It was the best and something that helped me see the brighter side of things during those harder teen years. Now as a grown up this is something I might include in my 30 day resolutions (i’m revisiting the New Year resolution and putting a 2.0 touch to it). Happy New Year everyone!!

  6. Posted December 31, 2012 at 11:12 pm | Permalink

    Having a Gratitude buddy is SUCH a good idea ! thanks for sharing.

  7. Nicole H
    Posted January 1, 2013 at 1:21 am | Permalink

    I love this!

  8. Posted January 1, 2013 at 4:08 am | Permalink

    What a nice idea. :) I’ve been writing gratitude lists in my journal, but I’ll have to see if I can think of a good partner…

    Happy New Year Andrea!

  9. Keri
    Posted January 1, 2013 at 3:09 pm | Permalink

    I need a buddy.

  10. Dana
    Posted January 1, 2013 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    Keri…I’m on the hunt for a gratitude buddy as well…wanna team up??

  11. Posted January 2, 2013 at 12:33 am | Permalink

    I love this idea!

  12. denise
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 1:17 am | Permalink

    Andrea…this is such a great idea. I really like the idea of starting fresh, too, with someone I know nothing about. Will you please find me a match?

  13. Posted January 2, 2013 at 3:40 am | Permalink

    I would love to pair up with a gratitude buddy. Anyone need a buddy?

  14. Posted January 2, 2013 at 4:15 am | Permalink

    A perfect idea, and exactly what I need this year.
    Blessings ~

  15. Posted January 2, 2013 at 4:42 am | Permalink

    From October 2011 to October 2012, once a day for 365 days, I posted (on facebook) a “Day___, I’m grateful ___.” During that time, my mom got very sick and in July she passed away. I’m sure I still don’t know the value of finding some small or large reason to be grateful each day and then sharing it with friends, some of whom were expecting and beginning to look forward to what I would share. I do know that there was a magic in it, especially day 365. That day my heart opened up to the whole year and in a way, it was as if a light were shining on all the memories that went through my head in search of what to add to a necessarily long list.

    I love the idea of having a gratitude buddy and a lengthening list of appreciation for the sweet details that are woven all through our lives. Thank you for sharing your experience with us.

    Time to seek out a gratitude buddy.

  16. Jen
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 5:39 am | Permalink

    Thank you, Andrea for being you. I have been stretched to my breaking points in 2012 but so happy to look forward to the journey of your classes in 2013. I am so doing this. Much love, Jen

  17. Margo
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 3:08 pm | Permalink

    I love this idea! Melody, I’m looking for a buddy! Margo

  18. Posted January 2, 2013 at 5:43 pm | Permalink

    Love this idea and have already sent a message to a friend I would love to do this with! Thanks for the prompt!

  19. Shannon
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 6:09 pm | Permalink

    I love this idea. I need to be a lot more grateful for the little things that happen to me every day and having a gratitude buddy is just the push that I need to get on this. Thank you. :)

  20. Posted January 2, 2013 at 9:47 pm | Permalink

    Love (and I need a buddy)!

  21. Posted January 2, 2013 at 10:08 pm | Permalink

    Love this too. Jennifer, if you’re still looking, I’d love to buddy up with someone I don’t know!

  22. Posted January 2, 2013 at 10:32 pm | Permalink

    hmmm…gratitude buddy. I think it’s an awesome idea to start but do you worry at all about being inauthentic? I remember my husband tried to start a gratitude practice with me and I just SOBBED because, YES! there were good things but the bad things seemed so dark and looming. I can definitely find things to be grateful for from day to day and i do some reflection on those things but the buggers are those things that get me WAY DOWN. Those are my places of rumination, in the shadows of the DARK AND LOOMING. How do you effect a shift from that dark ruminating place to hanging out in the light of gratitude? Am I the only one who finds herself here?

  23. Posted January 2, 2013 at 10:47 pm | Permalink

    I would love a gratitude buddy!! What a wonderful idea. Thank you so much.

  24. heymj
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 10:55 pm | Permalink

    I love this idea but could also use a gratitude buddy.

    Thanks,

    MJ

  25. Courtney Breul
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 11:32 pm | Permalink

    I love this idea. Need a buddy……

  26. Crystine
    Posted January 2, 2013 at 11:39 pm | Permalink

    Lovely. A real true blue penpal such as I have not had since grade school! And one to share what I am grateful with…Perfect. If you really have a moment I would be thrilled :)

  27. Rya
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 12:23 am | Permalink

    I ‘ve had an on-and-off gratitude journal for a few years but never a buddy! I’m game!

  28. Posted January 3, 2013 at 1:02 am | Permalink

    Yay, my cousin, who is currently travelling the world, is going to be my gratitude buddy! It will be really interesting, as I think we’ll have some pretty different lists. :)

  29. Charmaine
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 1:39 am | Permalink

    What great timing as one of my 2013 goals was to go back to my gratitude journal. I love this idea and would appreciate help matching me with a buddy. Thank you!

  30. P
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 2:28 am | Permalink

    I would love a buddy!

  31. Kim
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 2:45 am | Permalink

    What a wonderful idea!! I would love a buddy!! Andrea…can you please match me up as well?
    Thank you!
    ~Kim

  32. Shelley
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 4:38 am | Permalink

    Brilliant.

  33. P
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 4:57 am | Permalink

    !

  34. Karen (foundfeather)
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 4:58 am | Permalink

    Beautiful ! Hugs for your courage and the gift it is! Great challenges for 2013. You Rock!

  35. Posted January 3, 2013 at 10:55 am | Permalink

    Today I am grateful for giving us the idea and i would like a buddy. Can you help me to find someone? Thank you! Ute

  36. Tricia
    Posted January 3, 2013 at 5:46 pm | Permalink

    Andrea, I just received my match (thank you SO much!) and sent out my first gratitude email! I am so excited to begin practicing with this community!!

  37. Posted January 3, 2013 at 5:49 pm | Permalink

    If its not too late I’d love to join in!

  38. Posted January 3, 2013 at 8:26 pm | Permalink

    Id love a buddy too! Someone to get to know fresh!!

  39. Posted January 3, 2013 at 9:32 pm | Permalink

    I love this idea. I’m also into connecting with new people, so I would love for you to connect me with a gratitude buddy!

  40. Susan Harrison
    Posted January 4, 2013 at 11:18 pm | Permalink

    If you happen to have someone who needs a buddy, I’m game!

  41. Posted January 5, 2013 at 7:16 am | Permalink

    I love this. I am going to see if a friend of mine that lives far away would like to participate. If not I will be back looking for a buddy.

  42. Nancy de Heer
    Posted January 6, 2013 at 9:47 am | Permalink

    Hi Andrea, that’s a great idea and I would love to have a gratitude buddy!

  43. rebecca
    Posted January 6, 2013 at 1:35 pm | Permalink

    Ok, I’m in and in need of a match! Do you know anyone by chance Andrea that lives in the NY area?

  44. Posted January 6, 2013 at 6:02 pm | Permalink

    I started a gratitude group on Facebook as a one-month experiment with a few friends. Now it has turned into a much bigger, longer, better group! Anyone is welcome to join:

    https://www.facebook.com/groups/themonthofgratitude2012/

  45. Carol
    Posted January 7, 2013 at 5:36 pm | Permalink

    I would love fo you to match me with a gratitude buddy – such a great idea. Thanks for sharing!

  46. Nattie
    Posted January 7, 2013 at 11:21 pm | Permalink

    In need of gratitude buddy, and utterly grateful you are offering…..

  47. mary eileen
    Posted January 8, 2013 at 2:58 am | Permalink

    I love this idea and I love the idea of sharing with someone new to me. Can you find me a buddy? Oh Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!!

  48. Posted January 8, 2013 at 5:21 am | Permalink

    What a cool idea!

    I used to do something similar to this with a friend… we called it random goodness… very cool.

  49. Lohi
    Posted January 8, 2013 at 12:23 pm | Permalink

    Included on my 2013 resolutions list is:
    *Make a new friend
    *Start a gratitude journal
    and this fits in perfectly with that!
    I live in the UK and if you would like to buddy up with me I would love to hear from you :-)

  50. Posted January 9, 2013 at 4:35 pm | Permalink

    Hi Andrea,

    I love, love, love this idea. Lohi, if you’re still looking for a buddy, I’d be happy to exchange emails with you. Having a friend in the UK would be a great way to start off the year.

  51. Nina
    Posted January 9, 2013 at 4:59 pm | Permalink

    Andrea
    You are a woman who is full of amazing wondrous ideas.
    My journal has been a nightly list of “good things” for the past year. Sometimes, in the dark heavy days, it’s all I can do to find something that felt “not bad.” More and more it is an exercise in scanning for the good. The neuroscientists say we are velcro for the bad and teflon for the good. I am working at changing that around (especially as someone who can tumble into depression).
    As soon as I saw your post about a gratitude buddy, I sent out an e-mail to my dear ones. An old, but out of touch, friend (who happens to have introduced and married me to my husband), who lives on the other side of the country wrote back “I’m in.”
    Suddenly, we are deeply reconnected from these moments we spend sharing our lists everyday.
    Thank you as always for your wisdom and honesty.
    Nina

  52. Vanessa
    Posted January 10, 2013 at 6:34 am | Permalink

    I’d love you to matchmake me with a gratitude buddy!

  53. Posted January 12, 2013 at 1:28 pm | Permalink

    I want to do this…and I need a buddy :)
    Prett please!
    -Hollie

  54. Posted January 12, 2013 at 3:24 pm | Permalink

    Thank you for this. After reading this on the 2nd, I emailed two of my dearest friends who live in far away cities and I don’t get to see much. We’ve been doing it ever since, and I adore the little insights into their days, as well as remembering all that I have to be grateful for each day. Thank you.

  55. Posted January 15, 2013 at 2:19 pm | Permalink

    I have recently been turned on to the power of gratitude and I LOVE the idea of a gratitude buddy. Grateful if you could play matchmaker…. Is anyone still looking for a buddy?
    Thanks

  56. Betsey
    Posted January 23, 2013 at 3:49 am | Permalink

    Thank you, Andrea, for hooking me up with my Gratitude Buddy, Lisa. I can see that I a wonderful new friendship developing and THAT….makes me grateful!

  57. Vanessa
    Posted February 10, 2013 at 9:15 am | Permalink

    You gave me 2 Gratitude Buddies! Thank you, I enjoy writing to them and hearing from them.

  58. Posted April 18, 2013 at 3:32 am | Permalink

    Hi Andrea,
    I would LOVE a gratitude buddy? I see this is an old post are you still matchmaking?
    xoxo, Tia

  59. Posted April 18, 2013 at 3:04 pm | Permalink

    Are you still matchmaking Andrea? I had hoped my match would stick, but alas not. So I’m still looking for a buddy.

  60. Posted April 18, 2013 at 7:45 pm | Permalink

    Can I get one? I’m not registered in a course right now, is it something your just doing because your so great?

  61. Shelly
    Posted April 19, 2013 at 5:12 pm | Permalink

    I would love to be matched up with a buddy, Andrea.
    What a lovely idea.

  62. Posted April 23, 2013 at 4:33 pm | Permalink

    Ah! Need a buddy. Am always ever-grateful but, today… ahhh… this site, this post … struck a chord. Been a fan for a long while Andrea, I appreciate (yay!) this chance to amplify joy and also appreciate you. With thanks :)

  63. Crystine
    Posted May 1, 2013 at 4:53 pm | Permalink

    Yup. Need that gratitude buddy. Seems like I could use some brightening and I could sure send some along!

  64. Posted May 25, 2013 at 4:10 am | Permalink

    Hi Andrea
    Is it too late to request a gratitude buddy? Thank you.

13 Trackbacks

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