It is easy to be thankful (grateful) when things are going our way.
Ahhh, a well executed plan. A vacation that lived up to its promise. A beautiful woman (man) responding with enthusiasm to our "overtures." Hmmm, when was the last time you were consciously grateful that you have a roof over your head? A bed to sleep in? Food on the table? In America these basics are a given, aren't they? Or perhaps with the deep recession of the last 4 years, we are (occasionally) more aware that, even in America, the basics might not be so "basic" after all.
Whatever your general, everyday outlook is, it could be time for a shift in consciousness. Perhaps more attention to the items taken for granted. Something as simple as a toe. If you, like I, have ever seriously jammed a toe, this little appreciated "item" becomes central. It hurts so bad it alters the way we walk. It is so sore the smallest provocation brings our entire FOCUS to it! Something we rarely, if ever think about, dominates our waking moments.
That we can lose ourselves in the big picture, overlooking the myriad of gifts we take for granted, is human. The jammed toe, the dislocated finger, or even a more serious physical ailment, are all opportunities to take stock. Run through the inventory that is "you." Eyesight? Check. Mobility? Check. Hearing? Check. Ability to communicate? Check. I could go on and on, but I know you get my drift. My point is, have we become the rich kid sitting in front of a pile of gifts, unwrapping them at light speed, only to toss them aside if it's not the new laptop, or Playstation, or whatever it is that we believe we have coming?
Unflattering picture isn't it? Then let us be grateful for it. Let us resolve to do better thanking Life on a daily basis for what we do have! It is no small list. And as we become more aware, more mature in our appreciation, a surprise will unfold. As our gratitude increases, we create an environment for abundance. The more attentive (grateful) we are to our "gifts," the more Life responds. Amazingly, the rate of gifts bestowed increases. Scientifically it is known as "Sympathetic Resonance."
In this, as in all things I suggest, please test the theory. Apply it in your own life and see what happens. Truth being subjective, I can only relate my experience. You, being utterly unique, will experience variations suitable to your personality. That said, there will be a common denominator; experiencing the Gift with Gratitude will bring abundance, and ultimately, God. WPG
The ability to observe and participate in the enormity, complexity, subtlety, and beauty of our experience, is a Gift; whose by-product is Gratitude. Louie Schwartzberg: Nature. Beauty. Gratitude. (9 min)
The catch phrase "gratitude is an attitude" may be quaint, but it doesnt make it any less true. Science confirms the beneficial aspects. Science of the Heart (1.3min) Introduction to the neuroscience of emotions (9.2min)
There is a wealth of information out there if you are not yet convinced. For me, I am going to head off "somewhere" with Brother Iz... Somewhere Over the Rainbow by Israel Kamakawiwo'Ole (4.5min)
If the only prayer you said in your whole life was "thank you," that would suffice. ~Meister Eckhart
Gratitude bestows reverence, allowing us to encounter everyday epiphanies, those transcendent moments of awe that change forever how we experience the world. ~John Milton
Give thanks for a little and you will find alot. ~The Hausa of Nigeria