Each day offers us a variety of ways to look at the situations that present themselves to us, and ways to find gratitude in them. You were stuck in the elevator and late for work, but did you notice the sweet guy who was stuck in it with you? Your car broke down on the highway, which prevented you from being part of the pileup two miles down the road. You didn’t get the apartment you had wanted, but another one in your ideal neighborhood just became available the day after you found out. Every day, there are ways to find gratitude if we keep our eye on the positive ball.
1. If You’re Happy and You Know It
While it may seem like we often don’t have a choice, we actually do, and it doesn’t cost a penny. Be happy. Believe, that for whatever reason, things are what they are, and they will go one way or another. This is one of the best ways to find gratitude! Why not laugh in the face of your past experiences and say that things will turn out? You know those people who always have a smile on their face and things seem to come up roses for them? It’s not a coincidence.
2. Appreciate the Little Things
While it would be fantabulous to win the lottery, that would make the chances of being grateful 1:287,000,000. Instead, how about being grateful for that parking space that became available just as you turned into the lot? What about the gorgeous blouse in your favorite store, and your size no less, that was on sale for 75% off? How about when you found the long lost pair of jeans you love that just appeared in the bottom dresser drawer? Gratitude takes on different meanings for different occasions. Embrace them all.
3. Expecting is for Pregnant Women
It would be wonderful if, for better or worse, people got what they deserved. Karma is not always instant, and rewards are sometimes delayed. So in the meantime, how about saying the experience is the prize? Yes you returned the wallet. Let’s hope someone pays that forward to you someday instead of expecting a part of the cash that was in it. You gave a beautiful present to your friend for her shower. Perhaps the complimentary story she will tell at yours is more valuable than a monetary tit for tat. Gratitude is simple. If you don’t expect, it seems to find you more easily. Juts be happy in the moment, and it will always be your travel companion.
4. The Wild Blue Yonder
When you send your wishes off into the wild blue yonder, don’t expect them to come back. If they do, that’s the gift. Be grateful for the happiness that ‘what ifs’ brought, and give it a double dose of gracias if your wish boomerangs back to you. If it doesn’t, there must be something even better out there for you coming around.
Think of how many wonderful experiences, gifts, and people you have known in your life. Instead of being sad because some of them have gone away, feel fortunate that you have ever had them. And as they say, they never truly leave you. Once they are in your spiritual and emotional DNA, they are with you for always. For the sake of positivity, just say thank you out of the blue for them for no reason every once in a while, or more if it feels good.
6. Helping Those Helping Themselves
Good things sometimes come to those who wait, but they also come to those who do good things for others. When you are feeling low, or ungrateful, do something for someone else. That time in the soup kitchen will not only help the hungry person, it will also feed your soul. Gratitude likes that.
7. Be Still
Sometimes, it’s better not to ask for more, and just appreciate what is. Listen when your mind is clear. Don’t even concentrate on clearing your mind. Just don’t think at all. With this, you will feel what is and not what you want to be. Being grateful starts with recognizing the gifts you already have. And I’ll bet it’s more than you realized, beyond money, power, or fame.
The ways to find gratitude in your life are as different as the people who live in this world. What are your favorite ways to find gratitude?