Gratitude is the Tool of Dream Makers

Jennifer Foley, the owner of Balanced Soul, explains how to use gratitude as a tool to achieve your dreams.
Featured Image Gratitude and Dreams

coffee cup with napkin that has "Gratitude changes everything written on it"Gratitude makes all the difference in experiencing a successful practice of dream achievement. The fundamental motivation of gratitude helps us to achieve our dreams. For starters, appreciation of the good in daily life is a constant reminder, highlighting what we desire and filling our minds with positive thoughts. In addition, gratitude generates good energy, giving us an engaging vibe. As the saying goes, “like attracts like”; opportunities, people, and circumstances tend to show up to support our dreams when we feel grateful. Concentrating on abundance rather than scarcity and lack creates more opportunities for abundance because the things we place our focus on continue to grow. 

Barbara L. Fredrickson, Ph.D., author of the book “Positivity,” has been investigating the value of positive emotions for years. In controlled laboratory experiments, Fredrickson has measured the effects of positive states on people’s thinking styles. In field studies, she has cataloged the results of thinking more positively on people’s skills, traits, and overall well-being. She has learned that positive emotions carry far more benefits than most professionals have suspected, and practicing gratitude makes you feel more of these positive emotions. 

Successfully managing your emotions gives you the solid foundation to stay with your dream even when it seems like the whole world is fighting against what you are trying to do. Too many dreamers give up when the going gets rough because they think an obstacle is a “sign” that they aren’t supposed to continue their dream.


Gratitude can be a valuable tool to motivate and live a dream-filled life.  Here are five ways you can use gratitude to enhance the pursuit of your dreams.


Jennifer Foley
Jennifer Foley

Start using gratitude to cultivate an appreciation for where you are right now, no matter how far away your dreams feel. The feeling of gratitude can turn what we have into enough and more. Being grateful redirects us into living in the present. Focusing on the here and now slows us down into a state of reflection.

Putting gratitude into practice:
Let’s say that you have a dream of owning your own food truck. Start by cultivating gratitude around the vision of what you want your business to look like and how your life will look when you own that food truck. If you are working in a job you don’t love, start by being grateful for the resources that this job provides as you create your dreams. 


What you focus on expands. Be very aware of what you are focused on and how you choose to think and speak about it. Be mindful to stop negative thinking and ruminating over what you do NOT want. Be clear about the details of your dream. Cultivate positive thoughts around how some of the parts and pieces needed to achieve your dream are already present in your life.

Putting gratitude into practice:
If, for example, you have a dream to travel to Iceland and experience the Northern Lights, focus on cultivating gratitude for the exploration and adventure that lives inside you. Appreciate ways where you can have more adventure in your daily life. Begin to explore Iceland through your local library, or discover a new hiking trail, walking it to get in shape for your future hikes in Iceland.  


When we need an action to move us forward but are not motivated to do it, ask yourself: WHY will I be grateful that I took this action? Use your response to this question to help fuel moving forward. 

Putting gratitude into practice:
Let’s say you want to publish an article but are fearful about putting yourself “out there” and are stalling on writing the article. Ask yourself why you will be grateful after sending the article. This future-tripping gratitude exercise helps provide courage and motivation. 


Dreamers often tell us that they accomplished their dreams by taking them one step at a time. Dream achievement typically takes time. Usinggratitude can help us stay motivated and move on a focused trajectory toward a dream. Do this by taking the time to acknowledge, reflect, and appreciate the steps you’ve taken to follow your path. 
Putting gratitude into practice: 
Acknowledge and appreciate the experience of booking your first client, enrolling in a training program, or filling out paperwork for a passport. Cultivating gratitude for the small and not-so-small milestones along the way allows you to celebrate yourself and keep you motivated towards pursuing your dreams. 


Jennifer Foley
Jennifer Foley

Being grateful for what you have can make your current circumstances seem enough. However, it is also okay to appreciate what you have now while still working towards (and wanting) more. You can use gratitude to help you AMP UP your dreams. Use the power of affirmations.

Ask yourself: How will I feel when this dream is my reality? Why would I be grateful for it? What is my life like living this dream? What does this dream do for others?

Putting gratitude into practice:
Let’s say you have a dream to become a wildlife photographer for National Geographic. Practice being grateful as if you are already one — as if it is your current reality. Say: “I’m grateful for being a wildlife photographer because it’s a privilege to do this work, and I love nature. I’m thankful for my trips into the wilderness to capture life with my camera, which can inspire others to love our world. I am grateful for my dedication to this dream. I love that I’m so excited to get out of bed each day and photograph my world.”

Practicing gratitude for the things you call into your life in the future is equal to meeting the universe halfway. Visualizing and affirming as if your dreams are already happening is powerful. 

Start each day with a grateful heart and see how attaining your dreams follows! 

Balanced Soul logo end-of-life doula death doulaJennifer Foley has worked in the health and wellness field for more than 30 years, meeting the needs of adolescents, preteens, and adults in the Indianapolis area. Her love of knowledge relating to healing led her to obtain a bachelor’s degree in Health Communication and a master’s degree in health promotion-disease prevention, and she has advanced training as a Holistic Practitioner, a Certified Wellness Program Coordinator, a Mayo Clinic Tobacco Treatment Specialist, and is also trained as an end-of-life Doula and Usui Reiki Master. She enjoys helping people find their balance as an integrative well-being coach at Balanced Soul. Learn more at

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