A simple, yet profound statement. But the question is Do We?
The Buddhists have known for years that gratitude has been scientifically proven to strengthen your immune system and make you happier and more optimistic.
Human nature is to want what we don’t have and to dwell on the negatives—instead of celebrating what we do have and focusing on what’s going well.
I am guilty too of the same for a while now. Being a naturally free spirited person, I am uncomfortable with any kind of bondage that traps my mind, body and soul. My soul just starts rejecting it. So it is a battle of wits between what I want and what I have.
But sometimes circumstances in your life bring you to a point where despite your best efforts things are not as happening as you would like them to be.
Of late there have been some situations at home which have been draining me completely of all energy and positivity. It has left me exhausted and completely in a rotten mood. I am blaming not only the circumstances but also the other people in my life to an extent.
And recently all the pent up frustration was lashed out to my son who was on a long distance phone call.
On the other side he was bearing the brunt of my vile vomit of words. Not saying a word, he listened.
I went on and on for about 15 minutes till he found a pause in my words and then he spoke, as gently and calmly, as he naturally is.
His words not honey coated but real. Understanding me and making me understand.
Once the poison left my body I apologized to him, for bearing with an overly emotional mother and for saying things to him which he wasn’t even responsible for.
“I am so so sorry” I texted, again and again.
And he texted back, “its better the poison was thrown towards me, rather than anyone else, I know it wasn’t meant for me so it did not affect me, but I am glad it is out of your system”.
And every day, after that dreadful conversation, looking back, I wonder how your children suddenly become so mature enough that they take on the role of your protector.
And then you have your entire life pass by before your eyes, and all the teachings, and life lessons you taught your kids come back to you in multitude ways.
You are in awe of the universe and grateful to have such blessed souls around you to take care of you and remind you of things which you may have forgotten but they remember.
My point here is this. It can be easy to get swept away in the fast lane and forget to stop and show your appreciation for what you do have.
Gratitude doesn’t have to be saved for the “big” things in life. Being grateful everyday for waking up healthy, for having food on the table and clean home and clothes on your back is equally important. Gratitude is your partner understanding your moods.
Gratitude is not only about being thankful for positive experiences. In fact, sometimes thinking about negative or difficult situations can help to really nail down what you have to be thankful for.
Gratitude is being very very thankful for those handful people in your life who find it a blessing to have you in theirs.
Gratitude is to give back to others what they lack. Volunteering for the purpose of helping others increases our own well-being, and thus our ability to have more gratitude.
With so many bad things happening around the world, if you can find just one moment in your life that you are grateful about, then enjoy it and…….
Count your blessings!