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Life Lessons

How Gratitude Transformed My Life

I do not believe in band aid solutions. It takes a lot of courage and effort to get out of our dark days. I have been in phases where I can’t even think of a reason to keep going. I was once doubtful and had no idea if anything matters at all. Don’t get me wrong, despite having said all of that, this is not meant to be a grim blog post. Instead, it’s the opposite. I want to talk about something that painted color to my gray skies.

Gratitude changed my life. It transformed my mindset in so many ways possible. I was a pessimist before and I always hated the phrase “just look at the brighter side.” I thought that people who say those kinds of things have it easy, or maybe they have no idea of how exactly I felt. My resentment grew, thinking that others will never be able to empathize. Despite this, when I started my self development journey, I tried my best to absorb all the advice I heard with an open mind. I tried to apply all the tips I was taught. One day, I came across a journaling tip: “Create a gratitude list everytime you journal.” I did it every night, randomly thinking about things I was grateful for everyday. One day, I came across another journaling tip. “Try writing your usual day using the perspective of gratitude.” I tried it and I was in awe. There were a lot of things I didn’t notice before that I was unconsciously grateful for. The time I have for my morning routine, my coffee, my job, the cats I see on the street, my phone, and the list goes on. It was eye opening.

Days passed and I continued on with these tips and I found my mindset started to change. I started to unravel something to be grateful for in every situation. My mind started seeking for what to thank instead of what to criticize. While doing this, I became a lot more appreciative and I noticed that I was happier as well. Of course, I still break down and cry. It also took a lot of time and dedication. I had to make a conscious effort to practice gratitude. The result was astounding. Even during the days when I felt like nothing was working for me, I persevered. The rainbow after the rain seems to appear more often. It became easier to bounce back and put myself together.

I learned something valuable from this experience. Gratitude makes a difference. However, it is like a muscle that only strengthens when you actually work it out. That was an unusual analogy but let’s put it this way: It is our choice to be grateful that makes a whole lot of difference as we navigate life. It is not always easy. After all, we are not meant to be perfect. Our triggers are different and we can never be in the same situation as anyone else. 

A part of  “look at the brighter side” is something I sort of understand now. It’s not the blind indifference to suffering nor the disregard of negativity. It’s when we try our hardest to be grateful for the things we have and enjoy. It transformed my life. Maybe it can transform yours too.

Sending all my love,

Kath

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