If you can find genuine gratitude, the relief I felt when I didn't die was so powerful I couldn't feel anything but gratitude, happiness will follow. Feelings of happiness unexpectedly followed for me not immediately but I discovered myself (I didn't learn it or read it in a book, I experienced it myself and have since taught lots of other people) the more I was grateful, and I was truly grateful for my life, the more empowered I felt, the more empowered I felt the more positive things I was able to do and the more positive things I accomplished, really good things started to happen naturally for me once again. To this day my life is the thing I treasure more than anything and I am thankful every day to be alive.
Being thankful and appreciative is what gratitude is all about. Gratitude is not something you pick up like a virus and you're not born with it like your spirit. Gratitude must be practised to experience it. Like anything the more you connect with being grateful the more you will experience the positive side effects of gratitude. I realised when I had everything materially even though I'd worked hard for it and I was generous and gave to friends, family and to charity I wasn't actually grateful for any of it. To be honest I didn't really think about the money or the power until it was all gone.
Imagine how you feel yourself when someone does something really nice for you particularly when you don’t expect it. This feeling makes you feel happy, warm and very grateful to have such a good friend, family member or partner. These are the feelings I now work on manifesting for other people in my free life coaching, my purpose.
There are so many things in this life that we just take for granted because we never think about what our lives would be like without them, forget money for a moment, like the sun, water in the tap, electricity, our health. We are so busy wrapped up in getting what we want that we forget to open up to what we need.
Kathrine Hepburn once said "The key to happiness is not getting what you want but wanting it after you’ve got it."
Our world of instant fixes, consumerism, greed, over consumption and selfish behaviour is what actually makes us feel unhappy and isolated at the end of the day because we never feel thankful for what we take for granted. Gratitude is a key core value and must be practised every day.
Write a list of all the things in your life you are thankful for and why. Then make a point of telling those you love about your gratitude. Go back to the list in a week and add to it. Set in your mind where your gratitude lives and watch it change the way you respond to people and situations. When you are grateful for your youth and vitality you will naturally cease to be impatient and irritated by the elderly and show empathy instead.
If you are over eating, drinking too much alcohol or just abusing your body period, think about all those people who are starving to death, dying of thirst or desperate for a cuddle and there are more of these people than not. These thoughts of others worse off than you, will make you feel shame in the moment but then will empower you to stop being so selfish. You have a choice, something else to be grateful for, many do not. Your body is your temple, a machine that works without you having to do anything but put in fuel. So if you are stuffing it with all the wrong things, make sure it is not too late before you are grateful for it.
To be serene, gratitude is the happiness attitude."
For each new morning with its light,
for rest and shelter of the night,
for health and food, for love and friends,
for everything Thy goodness sends.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Photo by: Duy Pham Unsplash