The Power of Gratitude: How a Simple Thank You Can Change Your Life
They say you have to earn everything you want in life. That there is no such thing as being “gifted”, rather what truly matters is your devotion, persistence and hard work.
That makes one wonder: what about the things that just fall into your life out of the blue? Like snowflakes on bare ground, their sudden appearance in your life does not make any sense. So it begs the question: Did we truly earn these miracles or did we just get “lucky”?
When you venture into the realms of life's philosophy, you'll often find a common analogy.
It goes something like “Your human body is like an instrument fed by the words you hear. These words resonate through you to make the melodious tunes of your life.”
The better tunes you make, the happier your instrument will stay.
Being grateful is more than just about saying thank you. It has the power to help you truly embrace what all you already have. Often times we can get stuck in our lives, feeling dishearted not having achieved what we set out to achieve. It is for those times in our lives, those moments of feeling low, that we need to be reminded of what a beautiful gift life truly is.
I witnessed the power of gratitude when I started the practice of listing down 5 things I was thankful for in my journal as a daily ritual. It was the first thing I did when I woke up and the last thing I did before going to bed at night. My only two rules were: I had to do it every day and I could not repeat the same thing every day. It became harder and harder as the days passed by to find newer things I could feel blessed for having. On the 8th day of this newly adapted morning ritual, I found myself in a standstill. So like any other individual my age with a desperate need for a solution to a serious problem, I googled it.
What I found probably has had one of the most profound effects on my life till date. My life has never been the same.
I'll tell you what happened. I had been introduced to the idea of using affirmations a few months before this pursuit. So, when I googled how I could successfully incorporate gratitude into my daily routine and out popped the idea of using gratitude affirmation meditation and I was all-in for giving it a go. I was intrigued by what affirmations could they come up with for being grateful that would relate to everyone. After all, not everyone has the same stuff going on in their life. Five minutes into it, I realised what I had been missing. I, just like you dear reader, had missed the whole point of what being grateful actually meant.
What were these magic affirmations: “Thank you for my hands.” “Thank you for my feet.” “Thank you for my eyesight.”.
Sound so simple. Don't they. Feet, hands eyes. All things so many of us are blessed with but never really take a minute to appreciate. The bulging cellulite takes away from the beauty of our legs. Those unkempt, unmanicured fingernails make our hands ugly for us. As I delved in deep into my subconscious, in the middle of my meditation I found myself asking, why did I ever think these questions mattered?
This past month, as I tried to make being grateful a way of life, I realised how much I've been missing out on. It's astonishing how fast a frown can shift to a smile just by noticing the evening breeze on my way back from a bad -day at uni.
In my pursuit of harnessing the true power of gratitude, I've come to the conclusion that being grateful is actually an art. The challenge of practising such an art is, firstly, to actually remember to practice it. If you've always rewarded yourself for critiquing everything that flows into your life unexpectedly, whether it be in the form of subtle sarcasm or an A-grade rant, you'll find it really hard to stop from yourself from doing so. To embrace the situation in its true real and raw form is to accept life for what it is. Acceptance of life is the ultimate form of liberation. Once you liberate yourself from how situations play out, you'll no longer be bothered by them. This reinforces the idea that no matter what happens, you'll be fine.
Saying “thank you” to a rude waiter might not do anything for him/ her but it can be the whisper of great life change you've been waiting for months.
I've come to find that being grateful is one of the greatest acts of service we can do for ourselves. So why not give it a go, dear reader?
The power of gratitude is profound. I hope to make it a habit and I hope you start practising it today too, dear reader. It is an investment worth making as it will be the currency you can bank on later.
“Thank you” ^-^.
8 letters, two words, one powerful phrase that holds the magic to change your life.
Use it once a day and see it's magic unfold in your own life.