Yes, it sounds cliché, but here’s the reason you hear about gratitude so often in the context of joy: it’s very effective. Perhaps you’ve tried it yourself a time or two. If you haven’t found deep joy in the practice in the past, then you might simply need to tweak how you embrace it.
You can start by sitting down with a blank page. If you don’t have paper, typing this on your device can work as well. Think of one single thing that you feel grateful for. It can be a small thing; you’re grateful that you caught the early train or that your dog is feeling better after a
few days of low energy. On the other hand, it might be something big; you’re grateful that your parent received good lab results after a trying illness or that you have just gotten a promotion at a job that you love. Big or small, we’re going to take a moment for reflection and expansion.
After you’ve identified that one thing, now comes the important part.
Emotional depth comes from the details, the specifics, so you’re going to be as specific as you can about the gratitude you feel. Why does this thing stand out to you?
What are all the reasons you are grateful for this thing?
What matters most to you about it?
Why is it meaningful to you?
What would happen if you didn’t have/do/feel that thing?
When you think about this thing, where does the feeling live in your body?
Write until you feel it settling inside you, and once you get there and know that it’s real, hang out there for a while. You won’t regret it. then spend a few minutes sitting in that joy.