We all have access to a secret power that can immediately increase our love in relationships or love for our life. It is the power of praise. By praise, I don’t mean anything religious. Rather, a very natural way of being that is experienced by being present and rising above judgement and criticism.
Praise creates gratitude and gratitude leads to love. With practice, you experience so much love that you stop finding things wrong in yourself and others. Furthermore, the wonderful thing with praise is that it is a choice that you can make at any moment, irrespective of what’s happening, and it possesses the power to immediately make you feel better.
Let me prove it to you now. Wherever you happen to be as you read these words, find something that you do NOT like. (I know it’s not a very positive thing for me to ask you to do, but bear with me, we are going somewhere!). Then, once you’ve found it, actively think critical comments about it, for a few moments.
You might notice a stain on the carpet, a pile of dirty clothes that need to be washed, or hear the music that you don’t like coming from your neighbour’s place. Find something now and think critical thoughts about it for a few moments. As you do, notice what happens within your body and emotions.
Do you notice a heaviness or constriction in their body or any downward-spiralling negative emotional experiences?
Now, with the exact same thing you were just being negative about, I want you to find something to praise about it. I appreciate that you may have to scrape the bottom of the barrel and be creative, but nevertheless, for a few moments I want you to actively think positive and praiseful comments about it in your mind.
For example, you could now choose to be appreciative of having a carpet that keeps your house warm, clothes to wear and fully functioning ears that are able to hear sounds.
Again, as you do, notice what happens within your body and emotions. If you genuinely do rise above the previous negative opinions by focusing on what you can praise, you will find that a change occurs within your psyche. The feedback I receive when asking people to do this includes that they feel lighter, more upbeat or open and expansive.
Now here’s the point. Miraculously, the thing you were originally criticizing did NOT have to change for your inner experience to improve – your experience changed and improved simply through the power of praise.
Praise can heal your relationships
This simple praise game illustrates a liberating possibility when it comes to enjoying freedom from problems and lightening up your life. It proves that your inner experience of life is ultimately your choosing.
Happiness comes from you being OK irrespective of what’s happening. Happy relationships come from being OK with the other person, irrespective of if they meet your mind-based conditioned criteria for what's loveable.
By cultivating an attitude of praiseful gratitude, you don’t have to wait for other people or your life circumstances to change or improve before you can experience love. You can love life and be happier now!