The human brain has a natural tendency to focus on negativity. It\u2019s so second nature to us that there\u2019s even a name for it, negativity bias. It can affect everything from our anxiety levels to our relationships. Negative thought patterns are not helpful or hopeful for anyone. Still, for someone in recovery, it may leave your sobriety vulnerable to a setback.\u00a0 One way to cope with negativity bias is through gratitude. Now, before you roll your eyes and move on to an article with some real, un-clich\u00e9d advice, I promise not to make you keep a daily gratitude journal that you forgot to write in until five minutes after you\u2019ve tucked yourself into bed\u2014unless you want to. That definitely works for some!\u00a0 Research from the University of California (UC) scientifically proves that gratitude reduces lifetime risk for substance abuse disorders among several other behavioral health issues. Professor at UC and a leading scientific expert on the science of gratitude, Robert A. Emmons concludes that gratitude works \u201c\u2018because it allows individuals to celebrate the present and be an active participant in their own lives. By valuing and appreciating friends, oneself, situations and circumstances, it focuses the mind on what an individual already has rather than something that\u2019s absent and is needed,\u2019 he said.\u201d The mindset of gratitude is meant to be grounding. It counters thoughts about your past or worries about the future, allowing you to see the moment you\u2019re in and honor the journey that brought you here. It doesn\u2019t matter what the moment of gratitude looks like or how long it takes\u2014you can take a couple of minutes to breathe every day or journal for an hour every week. Acknowledging the big and little things of life that you cherish helps you stay out of that negative headspace and focused on moving forward with your life.\u00a0\u00a0\u00a0 But you said I don\u2019t have to journal? \u00a0\u00a0 If you didn\u2019t hear me before, let me say it to you again: You don\u2019t have to journal to be grateful. If keeping a gratitude journal works for you, that\u2019s wonderful! Keep doing that! If you\u2019re stuck for ideas that don\u2019t involve journaling, here are a few that can help you get started.\u00a0 \tMake Gratitude a Real Snooze(Button)-Fest Let me paint a picture for you: It\u2019s 6 a.m. on Monday morning, and you are tired, groggy and definitely not ready to get out of bed just yet. Your alarm clock is yelling at you to get going, and you know it\u2019s right, but why does it have to be so rude about it? What if, after smashing the snooze button, you used those blissful nine minutes to think of the things you are grateful for?\u00a0 What\u2019s great about this approach is that it\u2019s a low-pressure situation. You just woke up, so let go of any expectations of poignant thoughts and keep it simple. You can be thankful for the sleep you just got, the new day before you or that first cup of coffee you\u2019re about to drink. It doesn\u2019t matter what you take the time to appreciate, but starting your day with a grateful mindset is sure to set an excellent tone for the rest of the day.\u00a0 \tKeep Your World Tidy, Inspired and Taken Care Of This may seem like I\u2019m trying to trick you into cleaning your house, but I promise that\u2019s just a perk of this practice. Showing your spaces love, respect and appreciation is an act of love, respect and appreciation of yourself. Clear off your desk every day after work, or clean a dish after you\u2019ve used it. It\u2019s a small act, but it makes a huge impact. You don\u2019t have to go overboard with it or give every surface a white-glove test. It\u2019s not about becoming a neatnik; it\u2019s about being intentional with your environment.\u00a0 Wherever you can, create an atmosphere that reminds you to notice and appreciate the things you are grateful for. Choose colors that uplift you, pictures or items that remind you of people or places you love, or quotes that inspire you and set them all around so you can\u2019t help but notice all that you are grateful for.\u00a0 \tLet Your Pictures Do the Talking A picture really is worth a thousand words when you think of the emotions they can conjure up in you. If you can\u2019t seem to find the words for the gratitude you feel for someone or something, take a photo! Use your smartphone to create a gratitude album, get an album printed, or post a photo to social media with a unique hashtag that you can refer back to when you want to remind yourself of the things you love about your life. \tJust...Say It Here\u2019s a novel idea: if you appreciate something, someone, a service, kindness or courtesy, say \u201cthank you\u201d out loud. It\u2019s simple, but it takes a little resolve to pay attention to the small interactions throughout your day. Create a daily or weekly moment to recount who and what you\u2019re thankful for with your friends or family at the dinner table. Write a thank-you note to someone for the ways you appreciate them. Or leave a positive review for a business or service you\u2019ve enjoyed.\u00a0 The benefits of showing your gratitude are multiplied when you say it out loud. Not only does it ground you at the moment you\u2019re in, but acknowledging others spreads the attitude of gratitude to others.\u00a0 You\u2019re not going to do it perfectly. That\u2019s OK. Like recovery, finding gratitude in everyday life is a journey. Some days finding ways to be thankful is more challenging than others, but on those hard days, remind yourself that persistence outweighs consistency. Set your intention for gratitude, and always keep trying. You\u2019ll get a lot further than if you give up.\u00a0 Your journey of gratitude and recovery is going to be full of bumps, curves and pit stops. However, you\u2019re still going to be covering ground, so keep at it. Try something from this list or try something else. And remember that journaling is always an option! There are many ways to practice gratitude in your life, find what works best for you, and just keep going.