Looking back and looking forward with a thankful heart

Cardigan: Street One, Top: Yes or No, Jeans: H&M, Boots: Chigo, Sunnies: Cerjo, Necklace: ? (but very nice!)

My Christmas holidays are the perfect moment to relax and to reflect. This year I am in Switzerland during my holidays, enjoying the beauty this country has got to offer in winter. Lots of winter walks and skiing, followed by cosy evenings with my family or friends (see this previous blogpost).

Looking back

Looking back on the past year I can conclude that it has been a year that has taught me to be patient and thankful, two qualities that I will take with me in the year ahead.

Express your thanks!

Talking thankful: I have recently read an interesting article on the website of Harvard Health Publishing about the relationship between gratitude and happiness. People who express their thanks feel that they have much more to be thankful for than the ones that only think about it (let alone those who do not give it any thought at all). Feeling more thankful also leads to feeling happier. It basically comes down to the following:

“In positive psychology research, gratitude is strongly and consistently associated with greater happiness. Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships. Gratitude helps people refocus on what they have instead of what they lack.” 

Looking forward

So, what I can give you as a tip for next year is to express your thanks more often, in speaking or in writing (more tips in the above mentioned article). That way you will look back on 2019 with a thankful heart, realising the many good things and people you have in your life.

Remember Cécile from the Resilience blogpost? She has got a huge jar in her living room and a staple of small writing paper next to it. She consistently writes down her thanks each day and the jar is steadily filling up with lots of gratitude. She has told me that is has created an enormous positive vibe in her life.

Happy 2019!

Well, a positive vibe is one of many things I wish all of you for 2019. Let it be a year full of happiness and health, good times together with family and friends, lots of good reads and many more small joys that add to your happiness. Remember that life is not about the one big thing, but about the many small.

Hope to see and hear from you on my blog or in real life (or both!).

Thanks for reading and a happy 2019!



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  1. I think, and believe, that realising how good ones life is, is very important to really see how wonderful life is. Positivity is extreme important for body and mind! I wish you a fantastic New Year, my dear blogging friend!

    1. Dear Nancy. I totally agree with you that a positive attitude makes a huge difference in life. It also ensures that you will be much more thankful, since you will see more reasons to be grateful. Wishing you a very happy and above all, very healthy 2019! Lots of love, Lieske

  2. Very inspiring. Thank you Lieske .. hah.. on my way to a happier life already 😂😉. No kissing, I do agree without you. Expressing my thanks in my blogposts is already a beginning. I like the idea of the jar.

    1. I just love your direct Dutch humour Greetje. Thanks for the fun start of your comment and the serious note that follows. Cécile’s jar is a great idea indeed and it was impressively full I can tell you that. Love, Lieske

  3. I’ve recently found The 6 minute diary from UrBestSelf available on Amazon. It has a section on the importance of gratitude and it is a journal which helps you get into the gratitude habit encouraging you to spend 3 minutes morning and evening thinking about what you are grateful for. The book explains that research has shown ‘ the more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.’ (Zig Ziglar). It helps you develop the habit of focusing on all you have in your life rather than what you don’t have. It explains that most of the most successful people in the world (including Oprah Winfrey and Tony Robbins) keep some sort of gratitude book or habit because so much scientific research has proven it improves mood. Francis Bacon said, ‘ It is not the happy people who are grateful. It is the grateful people who are happy.’
    Why not try a daily gratitude habit for 3 months and see if it works for you too.

  4. Lieske,
    What a beautiful and wise blog post. I agree with you that both patience and gratitude are very necessary for a happy and balanced life.
    I adore your ombré coat and pendant. Chic , casual and confident for the New Year.
    I am also quite grateful and while I don’t write it down, I do talk to myself quite a bit! LOL!
    SENDING Love for a wonderful New Year.

    1. Dear Elle.
      Thanks for your teaching me a new word. Now I know that my cardigan is actually an ombré one I like it even more. Such a cool word. Talking to myself is something I do too, though mostly not about the things I am grateful for…
      Love, Lieske

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