If you look online, it’s easy to find ideas for practicing gratitude. (Check this and that, for example.)

Each day, when I go to my computer, I make a note of something for which I have been grateful in the last 24 hours. In addition, I am practicing “gratitude alchemy.”

Alchemy is, of course, transmutation of one substance to another, particularly – during the middle ages – transforming lead into gold. I use my alchemy practice to change irritation into celebration.

Whenever I am irked by something and find myself thinking that I wish it were different than it is, I find some reason be grateful instead. For instance, a few minutes ago a loud school bus rumbled past my window. Then, within seconds, came another. Since I dictate to write, those rumbles messed up my dictation. As soon I caught myself mentally grumbling about those buses, I gave thanks for free K-12 education, transportation for our children and bus drivers who put up with energetic schoolchildren and icy roads.

Thus, anger transforms into gratitude. Gratitude has its own alchemy. It causes us to feel more alert, alive, awake and joyful and leads to a host of other good things.

Right now, I am feeling very sleepy – even in the middle of the day. I will give thanks that I am able to set my own schedule. Now, please excuse me as I lean back and rest.

This week, try experimenting with gratitude alchemy…