- the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful:
Gratitude: It’s part of all our lives. The power of a ‘thank you’ can get you far! As children we were taught it as good manners. ‘What do you say…?’ It doesn’t really matter if you mean it. But did this do gratitude a disservice? We knew it was right, good and polite. As with many things we’re taught as children, it begins in teaching cause and effect. Which can slip into learned behaviour, a habit.
Someone helps you. Someone does something nice for you, the correct and sociable response is ‘thank you’.
But that doesn’t really respect the deeper meaning of gratitude or the power it has to craft calm.
I first came to gratitude about ten years ago and rather than it being a way to craft calm, I found it out of desperation. Today gratitude is a buzz word. It’s happily starting to reach into culture and consciousness.
But then I didn’t call it gratitude. Every night before I went to bed, I began keeping a diary. I needed to because I was in a dark place. I’d miscarried and every month came and went without any life changing toilet trips.
I felt so useless. I don’t know why I started but I began to write a list of four things at the end of every day in my diary:
Something that made me happy
Something I’d achieved
Something I’d learnt
Something I was looking forward to the following day.
I realised it was helping and I clung to it. It really helped to lift me out of those dark days.
Since then and the cancer diagnoses I’ve had a vested interest in living a happier, more fulfilled life. So I read a lot and you just can’t get away from gratitude as a route to happiness.
So here’s how it works…
You need to fill your diary. Sometimes there’s nothing to put in and so you have to get creative. Craft some gratitude. What do you have? Did you take something for granted. Could you adjust your view on something? Could something have gone a lot worse?
You start to look for things.
Positive moments don’t float past unnoticed.
Moments – like not losing your keys down a storm drain – start to take on a magical quality.
A gratitude diary gives you a reason to stop, pause, experience the moment instead of it rushing by.
It shakes up our sense of entitlement.
Start to look and you’ll find it everywhere.
Take note of every throw away thank you. Are you truly thankful? Is it something you can add to your calm cache of good things that go on.
It can help to shift and eventually transform a life dismorphia.
If you’re in a light place, this can all seem too airy fairy. Too simple. Undynamic. Totes emosh.
I believe sometimes folks need to be in a dark place in order to grow. That’s when this might be just what you need to pull yourself outta there.
In the words of Kris Carr: “Don’t expect immediate results. Patience is important when you’re cultivating your new reality.”
But (and I’ll say it again) it’s a skill. It takes practice. And it’s worth it. Your calm will thank you. Genuinely.
Love me x