Gratitude noun ‘The quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness’.
As part of my journey in life there has been many a time when the word ‘gratitude’ didn’t appear to feature in my choice of words – when it really should have. Somehow I just wasn’t feeling it.
The constant drip, drip of life, feeling stuck and seemingly only focusing on the negatives can all contribute to a vicious cycle of nothing but gloom. Almost being completely detached from all that can be considered good in our lives. It is a very easy trap to allow ourselves to fall into and one that can lead to all kinds of destructive behaviours.
The power of gratitude at these times can be really quite extraordinary, I am not talking about sharing gratitude because we feel indebted to someone, I am talking about taking time out to reflect on what we do to serve others and how that can influence our own relationship with the world.
The art of kindness we know goes a long way – but when we are feeling far from kind, tuning into our thoughts about what we do have, what we have achieved, our strengths, what we have learned in life and the relationships we have with people and how they each reflect directly upon us then we have something to be grateful for, that in turn will lead to more kindness.
I often use the analogy of ‘putting your gratitude glasses on’ looking for the positives, even if its aligned to the principle of 3 gifts and you write three things down each night, things from the day that you are thankful for, use a journal or grab a minute to actually focus and reflect from a sense of having enough. Anyone close to me will tell you, at times I really do swap my glasses over!
Demonstrating gratitude and being grateful doesn’t stop difficult things happening. We can, though, change the way we respond to those difficult times and that is what will help us see things clearly and in perspective.
So when the kids are arguing, the dogs been sick, you feel ill and it’s early March and snow is on the ground there is still time to change into your gratitude glasses.