Having an Attitude of Gratitude
There is a saying from the famous book “A Course In Miracles” which says that for which we are grateful for, we will never be without. Meaning, whatever we’re grateful for we will always have.
That’s a pretty powerful statement.
And if that’s true, which it is, then we carry all the power to get what we want.
It’s for this reason gratitude is so important to speak and feel every single day.
But what is gratitude?
It would seem it would be easy to have gratitude when things are going great. But we all know people, maybe even ourselves, who have a lot to be grateful for yet focus on what they lack.
Or what’s wrong with the world.
Or what’s wrong with others.
Or what’s wrong with themselves.
This is the opposite of gratitude. This is wrong-minded thinking and it’s a great way to keep yourself stuck, feeling badly and definitely ensure you won’t get what you want.
Practicing Gratitude in Everyday Life
So, let’s start with gratitude when things are going well.
Say you’re a bit early for a doctor’s appointment and notice the parking lot is full. Suddenly you pull in to the next aisle and a driver is backing out. You didn’t need the close space but you’re feeling grateful you don’t have to walk far. Say “thank you” and feel grateful for the parking space.
Or, maybe you have a wonderful relationship. It’s not perfect but finally you’re in a place where you feel abundantly loved, respected and in sync with your partner whom you adore.
One day you come home tired from work and instead of going out to dinner your partner has made dinner. He doesn’t cook well but he wanted to let you enjoy dinner together while in your jammies because he knows it’s your favorite way to eat and relax. Say “thank you” and feel gratitude for him thinking of your needs, even if the food is bland and you hate the mushrooms.
What about when things are not going well?
These are the moments when you either: A) have to have faith that everything is happening for your greater good, and/or B) you find something, anything to be grateful for.
This example is a real one.
I was driving home tired from my trainer’s house on a highway I wasn’t familiar with.
The radio was off and I wasn’t on the phone, but I was definitely zoning out. Next thing I knew, I found myself in the express lane getting off an exit I didn’t want to get off at. I felt boxed in and I panicked.
While jerking the steering wheel trying to get out of the lane I ran over plastic cones embedded into the concrete dividing the lanes. It caused me to lose control while the car was hitting one cone after another swerving in and out of the lanes. Eventually I gained control of the car but not after considerable damage to my hood and front bumper.
When I went to a car wash to see if they could clean it up, I saw thousands of dollars in damage. Boy, was I mad at myself!! It’s never a good time for a car accident and no one likes surprise bills.
I was mad at myself for a good two hours, then I went to gratitude. I said “Thank you God for not letting me hit someone. Thank you for letting me live. Thank you for getting me home. I got the message: pay attention and do less.”
I had to keep going to gratitude when I told my husband what happened and when I took the car to the shop and when I had to pay for it. I knew inside this was happened for my greater good. Gratitude keeps us connected to what’s important.
Another example is when my son told me he wanted to join the Navy.
I was so upset. I felt so much had been invested in him that the U.S. military wasn’t my dream for him. I was also worried for him.
After about a week (yes, sometimes it takes awhile) I went to gratitude.
First, I realized it wasn’t my dream to have, it’s his dream, and secondly I saw I was miserable because I was skipping gratitude. When I said thank you Universe for allowing my son to realize what’s best for him, I felt so much better! I was grateful I had a self-aware child, someone who knew what he needed and wanted for himself. I was grateful I had a son who could speak his truth and share his feelings. Gratitude brought me peace.
Be Mindful of the Process
Be careful not to skip acknowledging your feelings before going to gratitude. If you wake up feeling sad, acknowledge you’re feeling sad and allow that sadness. When you’re ready, go to gratitude for anything. You can feel grateful for breathing, a beautiful weed, the ability to swallow, two working legs or looking hot in a new outfit.
Say it and feel it.
Finally, you can give gratitude to the Universe, God, the All Knowing or just life.
It doesn’t matter.
Just say it and feel it.
And watch your world improve.
Forever grateful for you,
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