Gratitude, Schmatitude & rebooting life
If a fellow isn’t thankful for what he’s got, he isn’t likely to be thankful for what he’s going to get.
~Frank A. Clark
“Gratitude, she claimed, was the answer. Wallowing only makes things worse. “Instead, start each day with five things you’re grateful for. We can e-mail our lists every morning to encourage each other.”
Last year, November, when I was struggling with the new direction my life was taking, too exhausted, too depressed to get through the days, this landed in my inbox in the morning and this quote and this paragraph caught my eye. Everything that I feared, everything that depressed me, were things in the future. Things which may or may not take place. Things over which I did not have any control.
So a few weeks of feeling like this, I was tired of being depressed and negative. Life changing events shake us to our core. Yes, mourning and grieving are inevitable for what could have been but would never be. But life doesn’t end, it goes on and we have to find a way to go on with it.
So I took the advice and started a gratitude list with my girl friends. Every day we emailed each other 3 things that we were grateful for that day. Here’s the things that we were grateful for:
“Having friends who will be there for you – through the good, bad and ugly”
“Having fantastic colleagues who are incredibly understanding, supportive & wise”
“Having a job that I genuinely love doing”
“Learning something new everyday – at work, at university”
“Being able to make a difference in the lives of people we see everyday and those we don’t even know”
“Not getting lost in a new city and making some local friends”
The rest went more or less along the same line….. looking back what does this list say to me?
Human connection is by far the greatest need that we have. Beyond the need for the basic – food, clothing, shelter – all the other levels of Maslow’s theory are based on factors affected by people, other than you.
Did the gratitude list help me? It took a few days but eventually once again I started looking more at the positive incidences in my every day life. You attract whatever it is that you are looking for. Since I looked out more for the good things in life, I noticed them more. Because I saw them more and felt an even greater sense of gratitude for them, my satisfaction with my life was once again restored.
Nothing in life is as it seems – because everything depends on how you see it 🙂