The Subtle Art of Being Grateful

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Of the myriad range of emotions you go through in a day.. angry-a lot, happy-sometimes, quickly and frequently followed by frustration ,are just a few. So let’s try to think, how many times in a day do you feel Grateful?

Imagine rushing to work and you happen to look up to the blue autumn sky with white cotton candy clouds floating.
Do you feel grateful for this beautiful day? Close your eyes, memorize this sky. Even in the most turbulent of days recalling it can calm you down.

On my current vacation home I chanced upon someone I have known distantly. While I had a mental pity fest going on for the old lady, about how little she seemed to have, I questioned her about how she has been. Her reply astounded me. She told me she is very happy and content, she has a loving family and all her needs are met.

She left me wondering, how can someone be happy with only their needs met and not wants?

Maybe there is more around us to be grateful for then we really are.

What I deduced from this train of thought I will try to explain.

Differentiate between need and want :

You have 100 bucks to last a month, though you need 150.  You lose 10,what do you do?? Look for it, turn a few things upside down , then after a couple of days you restructure your finances to survive on the remaining 90, though keeping an eye open to locate the misplaced 10.

Now, if you lost the whole 100, what do you do then?

You try to think of ways to find some money, maybe borrow or a way to earn some.

Then out of the blue a friend drops in and gives you 50 bucks, the same money he borrowed around a year back and kept forgetting to pay back!!

How do you react? You are beyond grateful!.

Even though you are 100 bucks short , you thank God for watching over you.

You restructure yet again and meet all your needs with this trifle amount.

In a few weeks you won’t even recall this “calamity” and be grateful it all worked out.

My point here is, rather than pondering on my insignificant losses I’m grateful to be alive and having the ability to face the ups and downs.

Set an example:

With being a mother comes “excuses”. Not able to meet deadlines, not able to stick to my commitments. All are ,seemingly, excuses..

This comes with the territory of being a primary caregiver. After 3 hours of nonstop working in a high pressured environment I might be able to find time to do something that needs to be done in the 20-25 minutes break I give myself..

Still I choose to put my feet up on the coffee table and close my eyes to just shut out the world for a bit..
I might tell people I just couldn’t do it, with 2 sick kids in the house 24/7 , there was just no time.

Though I could hv done it by compromising my 5 hours of sleep time, which I have to interrupt anyway to take temperatures and give medicines.

Being a mother, there are always things that needed to be done, like yesterday. Stay at home and working outside the home mothers alike.

I might feel that being under the radar and trying to meet unrealistic expectations is the only way to survive.
Despite all the self bashing, I’m still grateful when my kid wakes up without fever.

There are two little people who watch me constantly and a little dose of being grateful for the little mercies makes them see the positive in life.

Being grateful is an art:

My very close friend bought an expensive, beautiful house. A real dream come true for many.

Upon being congratulated by me her response was lukewarm , further explaining that she had to take out a huge mortgage to afford it.

I was perplexed and got thinking “You should be happy and grateful, you can afford such a huge mortgage. There are so many people who want to afford even a small house on mortgage!”. But to each their own.

I wonder are we a generation of people who are so used to being gloomy that even when we have reasons to be happy we find some reason to dilute that happiness.

We live in times when nothing is enough. The worlds happiness is a constant reminder of what we might be missing out on.

Ask anyone of your acquaintances, me included, how they really are and most probably the reply will be a torrent of problems.

In a world of wants, most of our achievements have far surpassed our needs. Yet, Somehow unknowingly we are passing a legacy of wants and counting problems to the next generation.

After half my life having passed by in a blur, trying to be enough, being able to do it all. Basically trying to be perfect has left me only with huge baggage of frustration.

So now might be a good time to step back, if I wake up tomorrow even with some minor aches and pains, I will be grateful.
My kids trying to draw me up the wall, if I have my voice to tell them to give me a 10 minutes breather, I will be grateful.
Even when the husband turns the kitchen into a war zone, after preparing just a cup of tea. I will be grateful he at least knows how to make a cup of tea without burning down the houseDo you practice the art of being grateful ? #gratitude #thankful

So, count your blessings and share with us what are you all grateful for?

 

 
Shalini is an Indian,currently living in Dubai. She is mother of two school going children and is a stay at home mom. She is an avid reader and has recently forayed into the world of writing. Apart from being a contributing writer to the book “ When you’re done expecting”, she hosts her own website tyagishalinid.com.
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6 Replies to “The Subtle Art of Being Grateful

  1. Just yesterday my normally pessimistic self had to remind my heart that I have so much to be thankful for. It helps rearrange my priorities. Not everything is worth stressing over.

  2. I have been practicing gratitude daily. I have realized that life is about accepting the little things and the stuff you already have. Not the stuff that you want. Such a great post.

  3. And here I thought that I’m the only dealing with frustrations, unfulfilled wants and pessimism… Jokes aside, gratitude turns us outward and away from our more or less petty struggles. Well-written and funny, Shalini.

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