The art of being grateful

I don’t know about you, but the art of being grateful is NOT something I’m good at.

As we’re in the midst of the 30 days of gratitude project and grateful November, I can’t help but think about this constantly. We hear the related cliches all the time: Our glass is half full, you can’t always get what you want, but you may get what you need (Stones fan here), count your blessings, and so on. It’s a simple concept to comprehend, that of being grateful, but putting it into practice? For me, not as simple.

I’m not sure how to get better at it. Sure, it’s all about one’s perspective, and choosing to focus on the things going well in one’s life, etc. But again, I find this much easier said than done. Why? Maybe because the stresses and dramas in contemporary life can be so overwhelming. As we all know, we now live in a 24/7 world, and it’s increasingly difficult to get a break from life’s challenges. So like you, I have a lot to be grateful for, but I find it maddeningly difficult to focus on those things when I’m overwhelmed with dramas, figuring how to solve them, or at least how to manage them.

I’m also well aware of the fact that we miss all of the wonderful things right in front of us when we don’t fight to push away the negative that’s engulfing us. The small, wonderful things as well as the big ones. They’re always out there, regardless of how hard life might otherwise be. So how do we get better at this type of focus?

I could make a listicle about it, or post someone else’s, but another how-to list is not my point. My point is this – how do we clear our minds sufficiently so that we can even get into that positive space? If you’re like me, that’s the crux of the ongoing challenge. I know what I need to do. I know what I can be grateful for. Family, friends, health, income, roof over my head. But being aware of it and actually internalizing it are two very different things for me. So, how to let go, and to fully be present so that I’m aware, and in the moment of experiencing my blessings? I’m not there yet. But I’m going keep on working on it.

And I get the feeling I’m not alone out there in this… Am I?

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