My friend Renee recently gave me a beautiful gratitude journal and I treasure that gift. Truth is, she was as excited about giving me the gift as I was about receiving it. Gratitude at times like this is a fairly easy practice.
But what about those times when life isn't going so great? Let's say your life is a mess at the moment? Can you feel gratitude when you're in the middle of a real crapstorm?
Your child tells you she hates you. You're on your way to sign bankruptcy papers and you are going to be couch surfing because truth be told you can't afford to get your own place right now.
Gratitude is no warm and fussy matter. It is an essential ingredient to creating a better life even in the middle of all of the mess that we sometimes need to call living.
Here are a few tips that worked for me when the days were dim. Hope they work for you.
1. Suspend your disbelief. Sit with pen and paper and take a moment before writing to acknowledge that you are not feeling very grateful right now but you are going to suspend your disbelief for the duration of your writing.
2. Mine for gold. In the midst of my own turmoil,the cat making it too the litter box was often the only thing that I could find to write about. If being grateful puts you in the right mindset, humour greases the wheels a little. Look around you, there are things going well in your world.
3. Keep at it. Don't give up the practice just because it appears that things are not going well. Like most new tasks, you get better by doing.
Don't give up before the miracle happens. I'm grateful for you.