Terces Engelhart, Founder of Cafe Gratitude, Interviewed by Amber L'Estrange. Image by Juh Ore Duh Anne
Some simple tips to retrain your brain from trauma to gratitude.
How important is the practice of gratitude in your life?
I would say its MOST important. No matter what’ s going on, I ask, “Can I be grateful?” Focusing on gratitude interrupts your negative mind loop, and keeps you moving past where regret, remorse, expectation, fear live. Gratitude keeps you in the present moment of love. You don't have access to all the so called “goodies of life”—the joy, love, passion, compassion—If you are not in the present moment.
When did you first discover the impact of gratitude?
After surviving sexual abuse as a teenager and then recovering from an eating disorder of 20 years, I didn’t have a grateful heart. I felt betrayed, discouraged and like I was ruined. It was then that I started listening to God--an internal guidance. That connection to Spirit filled me with gratitude and love, and that was where my personal healing journey began. My journey toward, wholeness, health and healing. Gratitude was the doorway to all that.
What are some practical tips and tricks to bring yourself into gratitude?
Your family has a tradition where before every meal, everyone holds hands and offers something they are grateful for. How did this ritual come about?
When you are present and grateful before you eat, you have a different experience of the food. It tastes better, it's digested differently. When you are upset, you may not have an appetite, or you can’t digest your food well. Love and gratitude supports all aspects of your digestion and health.
In our family, we are part of a community where not everyone believes in the same faith, but the one thing we can all align to is gratitude. Focusing our attention on gratitude ushers in the presence of God, the presence of love. If you believe in the Bible, it mentions how you access the presence of God is through praise and gratitude.
Thank you for sharing your wisdom with us, Terces!
What impact has gratitude played in your life? Let us know in the comments!