Sorry for not posting so long and not being active on my blog lately, but fortunately my life has been so interesting that I didn’t get a chance to do this before 😉
Well, it might sound really stupid or strange talking about Gratitude given the time we are living in and seeing so so much negativity around us due to COVID-19. But, if you come to think about it, it is also a time when we should keep ourselves moving forward however hard it is. And what would be better to make us move on than talking about things we have, the resources we have, the family we have or even friends and people we have who are still there with us.
It’s incredibly hard to just always praise about what you have and not think about having it more. Be it materialistic things, or be it travelling or any other experiences. Because, as humans, we are derived by growth, we are species who always move forward and want more, no matter what. But gratitude should be used as a fallback mechanism because we all fail and will always fail to get exactly what we want, to get exactly that is perfect.
So what is this Gratitude exactly and how does it matter to you?
The word gratitude is derived from the Latin word gratia, which means grace, graciousness, or gratefulness (depending on the context). In some ways, gratitude encompasses all of these meanings. Gratitude is a thankful appreciation for what an individual receives, whether tangible or intangible. With gratitude, people acknowledge the goodness in their lives. In the process, people usually recognise that the source of that goodness lies at least partially outside themselves. As a result, gratitude also helps people connect to something larger than themselves as individuals — whether to other people, nature, or a higher power.
There have been so many researches and studies on this psychology, and it has been proven again and again that it does impact not only our happiness but also our biology and physical elements as well. A 2003 study published in the Journal of Personality and Social Psychology found that gratitude was a major contributor to resilience following the terrorist attacks on September 11. Recognising all you have to be thankful for – even during the worst times of your life – fosters resilience.
Similarly, everyone in the world needs to create fosters resilience, and it is bound to help you create an ability inside yourself to gain happiness, strength in this time and hereafter.
How can we actually practice Gratitude?
Well, I think everyone has own ways of being happy as well as being sad, and with everyone being unique in its own, its really hard to generalise something like this, because our happiness and sadness largely come from many factors like your childhood, your current environment, your circle, your sensitivity and lot more.
But we can certainly practice few things which are bound to help most of the people out there.
Make a Gratitude Jar
Personally, I write down at least one thing every week for which I am thankful for and put it inside the jar and on 1st of every new year, I open all the chits randomly and read how beautiful and grateful my year was. This gives me an abundance of the belief that even the future is going to be great and whatever happens, there would still be things I would be grateful for.
Leave some cash in Random Places
I know it really sounds way too stupid for people who would have never done it, but trust me, try this experiment where you would leave say just 5 or 10 bucks with a note as ‘Gift from Universe’ at random places like bus stops, near footpaths, etc. For me, this is just leaving some positive energy out there because when someone randomly finds this stash, it would really make their day. After all, this is like free money for them. Think of yourself. If you find some money even a small amount as 10 bucks in random places you weren’t looking, you would have a smile or a laugh and feel good about it, and you spend it on maybe donating it or buying something which was not even necessary, but the point is, it makes your day.
So I think when you are in an attitude of giving or thanking the world or those people whom you won’t even know, it makes you feel very rich inside, if not materialistically, then mentally and that’s what it counts to be in the happy zone.
Setup a gratitude meeting every week with your friends or someone close to you
As the law of attraction works, you grow those elements on which you consistently focus on. A lot of people always focus on why they have so many problems, why they earn so less, why they are not so happy and trust me, WHY becomes muted for the universe and they attract problems, less money, more sadness around.
Rather, set up a 15 or 30 mins call with someone you love or a group of friends every week to talk about how amazing things went by this week or what are you thankful for this week in your life. It may be as simple as having your favourite pizza, meeting someone you had lost contact with or just not being sick whole week. If you have this practice, you will create a practice to find new things you are grateful for, so you can come up with something for your next meeting and I would this is the healthiest competition for everybody. Because even if you lose, you win by looking at some nice things you always ignored.
Have a Gratitude Session Every Morning
When I wake up in the morning, I read something which I call my Gratitude Prayer or a session, where I thank very basic but very critical things which we otherwise tend to really ignore. Here is an example of my prayer every morning.
I am not saying that these are magic words, and I don’t have any bad days, or no bad things are happening to me. I am just making a point that these words don’t let me forget that having another day alive is also a blessing even if everything else is wrong. So make a prayer or note and read this aloud every morning and see how your perception towards mundane things change.
My favourite part. I think we learn to appreciate what we have a lot more when we travel the world and realise how many people are out there just struggling and surviving to make ends meet. Be in Europe or South East Asia; you will always find people sleeping on the floors, asking for food or just existing till they die. Looking at all these things when you travel makes you realise that compared to all this, you are at a much much better place in your life. If you visit countries like America and Europe, you will also find that there are people who are living there illegally and basically all their life, they play hide and seek, cannot use a passport to travel anywhere, cannot even drive on the road without the fear of being caught, let alone working at lower wages than basic standards. When you see these people, you realise that even being able to use your passport or drive on the road without fear of being caught is huge freedom which not everyone enjoys.
This is not the end. There are many many ways to keep yourself in the attitude of the gratitude, its just you have to find what works for you better and keep you in perspective. I am not saying that if you do this, you won’t have bad days or bad things will stop happening, but if you practice this, the focus will change from what’s bad to what’s good and it makes a lot of difference.
Let me know your thoughts in comments!