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Day 1: Gratitude

Snap out of comparison mode — it’s there to steal your joy!

Have you ever heard the phrase “Comparison is the thief of joy?” Well, I believe that’s absolutely true. When we are in a mode of comparison we assume what we have is just not good enough.

We wish we were better, healthier, more attractive and even more successful. Everyone seems to have it figured out but us.

We’re focusing on everything that we don’t have and that we don’t have enough. We often wish our current circumstances were better. We reminisce about how things “used to be” in our relationships or that dream about that job we just don’t have.

We’re glued to our phones looking at what everyone else is doing instead of enjoying where we are in the current moment. We are comparing and when we do that we rob ourselves of feelings of joy, connection, and happiness.

When we compare, we’re transforming our brain’s energy into negative emotions, which leaves us little mental bandwidth to experience joy and enthusiasm.

If you’ve ever been caught up in this spiral… and I know I have… then you know it’s exhausting.

The good news is, is that we can flip the script and change our way of thinking and all it takes is  gratitude.

That’s exactly what we’re going to cover in this video. So stick around.

Read the full video transcription:

Hey, it’s Doug Cartwright and I’m the founder of The Daily Shifts and I’m going to help you find happiness and purpose in your life.

After using the techniques and practices I’ll talk about, you’ll love the person you’ve become and will enjoy experiencing a life at a higher level.

You are on the first day, day 1, of our 5-day best week ever challenge.

Our intention here is to help you uncover and start implementing five simple habits that will bring you lasting happiness in your life, and as you integrate all of these five habits into your world over the next 5 days, I can guarantee you that you are going to have the best week ever. 

Regardless of what happened in your external world, You’ll start feeling so aligned internally, you’ll be able to handle whatever life throws at you. Feelings of unworthiness, anxiety, or just feeling stuck will start to fade away.

Today we are talking about GRATITUDE.

Read the entire transcription...

We live in a fast-paced world with a lot of external pressures to better, wealthier, and more attractive.

It can be so easy to get so caught up in thinking about what we want and where we’re headed, that we often forget about what we already have.

When we practice gratitude, it is scientifically proven to rewire our brains to feel happier and more optimistic.

Now I get it… You might be thinking “Doug, why do I need to care about that?” “Why should I care about connecting to other people or a higher power when I have my boss, my partner, my Uber driver, or my annoying friends all stressing me out?”

This is a common myth with gratitude.

I have often heard friends and my clients say that they will practice gratitude when they have something to be grateful for. This is what I call “happy when” Syndrome. Most people think in a way “I’ll be happy when I get the job, spouse, car, house, promotion, body…whatever.”

Practicing gratitude for the things already in your life creates a feeling of “happy now”. You start to fall in love with your life now, today, in the moment. And that is something we all desire and live for.

Scientific research has shown through fMRI scans that expressing gratitude literally changes the molecular structure of our brains and makes us healthier and happier.

The Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley recently conducted a study with 300 adults who were seeking out counseling at university. The study randomly assigned the study participants into three groups.

All three groups received counseling services. 

The first group was also instructed to write one letter of gratitude to another person each week for three weeks straight.

The second group was asked to write about their deepest thoughts and feelings about negative experiences.

And the third group just got the counseling services and wasn’t asked to complete any writing activities.

So what did they find? Compared with the participants who wrote about negative experiences or only received counseling, those who wrote gratitude letters reported significantly better mental health four weeks and 12 weeks after their writing exercise has ended.

If you regularly practice gratitude, it will create a climate change in your life. It makes everything inside more calm thus allowing you to navigate everything outside more intentionally. This is because gratitude shifts your inner focus away from negative emotions like anxiety, fear, and worry. And focuses them on emotions like abundance, appreciation and love.

So how do we cultivate more gratitude in our lives? Let’s talk about today’s tip. 

Gratitude is a simple 2 part practice. First, Name it. Second Feel it.

Saying out loud what we are grateful for brings it to our awareness, but gratitude is also a state of being. When we can truly feel the emotions of all the many blessings in our lives, it allows us to embody a newer, healthier way of life.

When we are practicing gratitude, we are acknowledging the goodness in our lives internally, which helps us express ourselves as better versions of ourselves externally.

This is a healing process… when we connect to the world, nature and other people, or a higher power we are creating a positive emotional response to the things around us.


So here’s your growth challenge for today.

If you haven’t already, download The Daily Shifts app. In the first section, there’s a gratitude piece. I want you to fill our 3 specific things you’re grateful for.

Number one being a person who’s made a positive impact on your life.

Two being an experience you’ve had this year that’s made you a better version of yourself.

And three something you use every day that would be really annoying if you didn’t have. This could be anything from your phone charger to toothpaste, or water pressure.

Once you name and acknowledge these things, I want you to take a moment and feel the emotion coming up.

This shouldn’t take any longer than 30 seconds, and you can do this right now in the Daily Shifts App. I want you to notice the difference this makes in your mood, your demeanor, and your stress levels. I promise it will make a huge difference.

So thank you for watching today. If you learned anything new, make sure you mention it in the comments below and post about your progress on Facebook and Instagram with the hashtags #thedailyshifts and #bestweekeverchallenge

I cannot wait to see the person you’re becoming.

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