“Gratitude is the attitude that sets the altitude for living.”
Gratitude. This is my most recent area of focus during my journey to reaching my highest potential. On this journey, I’ve learned that a grateful spirit makes us more receptive to receiving further blessings. To put it simply, by paying gratitude forward, we are already thanking the universe (or whatever deity you believe in) for future benefits and good fortune. If you’re not convinced of this concept, think about all the negative thoughts we have each day.
“I hate Mondays.”
“I hate my job.”
“I’m always so tired.”
According to the National Science Foundation, the average person has about 60,000 thoughts per day, with a whopping 80% of those being negative. There’s a clear correlation between the power of our thoughts and the actions we take and attract in our lives. Can you imagine the difference in our perspective if we were able to replace those negative thoughts with positive and grateful ones?
Trust me; I’ve already put this theory to the test and can personally affirm that it works. It’s my natural tendency to be anxious (even about things that haven’t happened) and often find myself overwhelmed with a collection of “what if’s” and overall negative thoughts.
For the past 60 days, I’ve tried to imagine my thoughts as a TV news ticker, with each thought scrolling along the bottom of the screen (per the suggestion from one of my favorite books by Dr. Wayne Dyer, Wishes Fulfilled). Instead of focusing on the negative thoughts, I made a conscious effort to replace these thoughts with positive ones, and when the occasion arose where something didn’t go my way, I replaced anxious thoughts with grateful ones, thanking the universe for the lesson that’ll lead to my blessing. As a result, my panic attacks have lessened, and my overall anxiety has quieted.
A great exercise to become more grateful is to think about all the things you can be grateful for right now. Yes, times are hard, money can be tight, but I guarantee that there are at least nine things you can be grateful for today. Think about them or write them down in a journal. However, you decided to do this exercise, try and put it into practice EVERY DAY, even if you don’t feel like there’s anything to be grateful for. Don’t believe me? Check out the list below!
1. You’re alive RIGHT NOW
The next day, hell, even the next seconds of our lives are not promised. You, being here, reading this post is something to be grateful for!
You don’t have to have dinner at a five-star restaurant to be grateful for food. Food, even a cup of noodles, is a luxury we take for granted. Be thankful for every meal you have; some aren’t so fortunate.
Weird thing to be grateful for? Not exactly. Time is a gift, and we can use it however, we please; to be productive or not. Again, the future isn’t promised, and each moment of every day is an opportunity to better the lives of those around you and yourself.
Whether you have it or you had it, you lost it or just found it; love is something to be grateful for every day.
5. The Internet
If you’re reading this, it means you have the internet, another luxury we take for granted every day. The internet is what you make it, and hopefully, we can all use our individual platforms to spread love and positivity.
6. Your mind
Something that’s been with you since you’ve been born may seem challenging to be grateful for. I learned to be thankful for my mind after watching my grandmother slowly develop Alzheimer’s and not being able to remember her loved ones or memories.
7. Clean Water
When I was growing up, unsafe drinking water was something I only thought was a “third-world” problem, but that’s not the case. Even here in the US, families in areas like Flint, Michigan are being subjected to unsafe water. Now every time I take a shower or grab a glass of water from the fridge, I’m grateful for this luxury.
8. The Sun
This big ball of fire thousands of miles away keeps us alive and our planet alive. What more could you ask for?
Put your hand over your heart. Close your eyes and use your mind’s eye. Feel that? That’s YOU. Be grateful for the gift of consciousness and individuality.
What else are you grateful for? Leave a comment!