I have been thinking about gratitude and about how much having an attitude of gratitude each and every day transforms one’s overall outlook. Gratitude can turn a negative outlook into a much more positive one. Being grateful for even life’s most painful lessons or experiences can transform that pain into a more positive emotion and experience. When we feel grateful, we are also much happier in life.
On a personal note, I have been through hell and back, but I am grateful for all the pain I went through over the years. I have faced numerous losses, failures, disappointments, setbacks and heartaches, however, I would not be who I am today or where I am today if it weren’t for life’s most difficult and painful experiences. I wouldn’t be as strong as I am now if it weren’t for the pain and suffering I endured, so I am grateful.
Even the worst of experiences have brought gems and jewels. Those experiences were critical to my own growth, self-development and learning. I am much more self-aware than I used to be because of those painful lessons; I am a much stronger and better person now than I was in my twenties and even my thirties, so I maintain a grateful attitude.
I also find that being grateful for all that one does have, as opposed to focusing on all that one doesn’t have, creates greater happiness in general. I try to focus on all the positives – all that I DO have and appreciate now. I have a roof over my head, I have food, clothing, friends and support – I have all that I need, and I am grateful for all of these things. My life is far from perfect and I don’t have everything that I want, but it could be far worse, so I appreciate all that I have in the present.
On the opposite end, when we focus primarily on all that is lacking and consistently complain about it, what happens? We are not happy! We become unhappy with where we are right now. I used to think in those terms, and as a result, I was very unhappy. I was always wanting and desiring more and never felt satisfied with the here and now. If you find yourself doing this too, why not shift your mentality to being grateful and happy about all the things you already have that you appreciate and value? Then you can feel much happier and satisfied! Voila!
And when we experience low points, we can still be grateful for all the good things in our lives, look to the positive side of things and find silver linings. There is always a silver lining to be found in any given situation, which will help shift your feelings about the situation and improve your mood. You can also think about what you are gaining and learning from life’s most painful experiences. From pain comes personal growth. From suffering comes strength. The happier moments are also that much sweeter when we have experienced such lows, and we can be grateful for the good moments as well as the bad moments because we know how truly precious those good moments are when we have them.
Turning painful experiences into valuable life lessons that we learn from, can appreciate and become grateful for will lessen the pain of those experiences. And developing an attitude of gratitude on a daily basis by focusing on all that one does have and appreciate will create a greater sense of inner peace, contentment and happiness overall.
So if you are struggling right now in life, try shifting your mindset and you will be amazed at how much that can transform your overall outlook and emotional well-being – here’s to being grateful in life and to your happiness!