Browsing the archives for the Gratitude tag

When Gratitude Flows

Life as it is, Spiritual Journey

I love gratitude. I love it like a thirsty man loves water. I need it like a man needs water, too.

Sliding Down the Falls of Time

I need it, but I so often am without it. I can tell because I start feeling like things should be better. Maybe you know the feeling? I am lacking gratitude when I find myself comparing the way things are with the way I think things really should be. It doesn’t matter what I am looking at – maybe comparing something I tried to accomplish with what I actually got done. Maybe I am comparing how someone treated me with my own ideal of how i deserve to be treated.

Either way, there is a certain dissatisfaction that comes up. A resentment arises against the way things are. That’s the thirst.

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend. Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.
— Melody Beattie

So the question becomes, how do we go get a drink of gratitude when we need it? I can’t just will gratitude inside me – I know, I’ve tried. But surprisingly it’s possible for me to just go do a few simple things that let me start getting in touch with it again.

For me, it always starts with making a list of things that I am grateful for – for example, when doing this in my car (and I seem to do this a lot when I am in my car), I start with my car. Because no matter how much Houston traffic may be sucking my joy right out of me, it is still better than walking everywhere I need to go.

Oh hell, I could probably use a gratitude list right now, and it seems the easiest way to illustrate what i am saying:

I am grateful right now for…
…having this place to share my thoughts
…for the people on twitter chatting away in another window on this desktop (they are awesome)
…my house, because it is cold and wet outside and I am neither of these things
…Internet radio (listening to blip.fm at the moment)
…great conversations I had last night at Coffee Groundz
…a day of hanging out with my son
…Ethiopian Sidoma coffee
…Maire Brennan’s Celtic music of hope and faith (yes, the music changed)

Yes. A comforting sip of clear and cool water soothing my mouth and throat as I swallow it. I wasn’t even aware of how thirsty I was until just feeling the quenching of that thirst.

And I can even make it better! There are people associated with some of the things on that list. By telling them how I feel right now – enriched, warm, grateful – because of what they gave me, I can share it and make it grow. I need to remind myself that my life is this rich and wonderful because of the the other people that I am connected to – whether by social media and in person.

Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.
— Cicero

What about you? What are you grateful for? Please leave a comment with your list – even if it’s only one or two things Better yet, after you make your list, share whether making it changed how you feel or see the world. (And if you see something that you like in the comment of another, let them know.)

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