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YJ Gratitude Challenge: 5 Things on Janet Stone’s List

San Francisco-based yoga teacher Janet Stone offers her personal strategies for fighting the pull of "not-enoughness."

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Commit to the YJ Gratitude Challenge and take a moment each morning this month to give thanks. Make your list, post it, share it, and tag us @yogajournal and #yjgratitudechallenge. We’ll show our appreciation for you by sharing our favorite reader posts on Thanksgiving Day. Here, Janet Stone offers her personal strategies for fighting the pull of “not-enoughness.”

See alsoJanet Stone’s Mom-asana: Open Your Heart to Gratitude

My Gratitude Practice

It’s so easy for us to get pulled into the pit of “not-enoughness, the list of all that is lacking and all we need. It takes concerted effort to turn our attention to the list of enough. My gratitude practice is a practice of “enoughness,” of acknowledging all that is already enough in my life—loves, friendships, finances, mothering, circumstances, and my body.

Gratitude to me is an active state of being. At times we are unable to activate this state because the list of lack is in our way. When we turn our attention to the many miracles of our breath coming in and moving out and to all the places in our being that ARE healthy and functioning well, we can (often) arrive at this place of gratitude.

See alsoJanet Stone’s Mom-asana: Build Strength With Floating Lotus Pose

How I Get Grounded for Gratitude

When gratitude feels elusive, my practice often incorporates what appears to be meditation. That means I simply sit and engage in this practice of guiding myself through all of the things that are enough—and even wildly abundant—in my life. 

The next thing I do is turn my attention toward being of support or service to another. I find this pulls me back into connection with gratitude. This support or service can be something as small as offering a kindness to someone on the street or volunteering for those in need.

My Gratitude List

1. Birth
2. Death
3. Inhale
4. Exhale
5. Oh, and my adorable and wild children, India and Lilianna

The Yoga Pose I’m Most Grateful For

Whichever asana invokes the most compassion is the one I’m grateful for. The shape is not as important as its ripple effect of love. So, I would say that I’m grateful for all of them, which nourish this practice and remind me to be kind inward and outward.

See alsoJanet Stone’s 16 Poses for a Strong + Stable Core

San Francisco–based yoga teacher Janet Stone started her practice at age 17. A student of Max Strom and meditation teacher Prem Rawat, Stone teaches vinyasa flow at events around the world. Her new kirtan album with DJ Drez, Echoes of Devotion, hit number 1 on iTunes’s World Music chart this year. Stone has two daughters and offers this advice to moms: “Motherhood offers infinite lessons in the realms of surrender, empowerment, grace, mistakes, and patience, and then some more patience—as well as the endless unfurling of transitions and change. Practicing yoga amidst this adventure can support us in myriad ways to find our center.” Learn more about her upcoming course, Yoga for Moms.