It is downright difficult to keep your head up when it seems like the world keeps kicking you when you are down. Sometimes we just go through tough times or tough years and it is hard to see beyond our troubles. One thing I always try to remind myself to do, even when I feel like nothing is going my way, is to be grateful. Whether you just make a list in your head or keep a journal, thinking about all the things you do have instead of all the things you don’t have will help you put life in perspective.
Lately, I’ve been feeling pretty lost. My husband and I took this epic trip for 7 months traveling from Argentina to Guatemala. Every day we were discovering something new, hiking a new mountain, eating a new food, meeting new people, and it was amazing. Don’t get me wrong, it wasn’t all perfect, but it filled our days with joy most of the time. Then that dreadful day came around the corner veering its ugly head, and ending our adventure. Reaching the end of an epic journey can be downright depressing!!
You are thrown back into reality head first. Sure, the first weeks are nice catching up with friends and family and seeing your favorite places again, but then it all sets. You realize it is over and you aren’t going to wake up by the beach tomorrow and daydream in a hammock for hours. You’re back home and you need to get a job and start your life all over. As a result, you start to sulk around feeling really sorry for yourself. Getting out of bed in the morning doesn’t feel nearly as exciting when there is nothing beautiful waiting for you outside that door.
The only thing that is helping me through right now is doing yoga, meditating, and trying to show gratitude. GRATITUDE is so important in times like these. It is so easy to forget what we do have, when we are busy lamenting what we don’t have. Obviously there are people with nothing, so we can at least list things like a warm bed, roof over our heads, food in our bellies, a car if you have one. That list right there shows that you have a lot more than most people. What else can you be grateful for?
I can be grateful for a loving partner, caring and supportive parents and sister, and amazing friends. Those three things make my life really rich even though my wallet is empty. Did you wake up this morning? Did you take a deep breath? Are you alive? If you are reading this, then I’m going to assume the answer is yes! Be grateful that you are alive and that you have another day on this earth. Take a deep breath and be grateful for the air you breathe.
Do you live your life free of pain? If so, be grateful!! A lot of people wake up in excruciating pain every day and still have to go on living.
Do you have a cat or a dog? Do they keep you company when you are sad? Be grateful for their presence in your life!!
Do you have health insurance? I don’t, but I would be super grateful if I did.
When you really start listing all of the things you do have and not things you don’t, you realize you have quite a long list after all. This puts life into perspective. Life is not easy. It is damn right hard! I’m grateful I was even able to take such a long trip with my husband, many people will never have the opportunity to leave the country, or their state, or even their small town. I am very lucky to have the opportunity to travel.
Sometimes it is easy to forget everything we have and just see the emptiness of our unfulfilled desires. I currently have no job. I have no car. My husband isn’t home Monday through Friday. I have $40 in my bank account. BUT, as I’ve listed, my life is full of much more than just those things that are missing. I have to remind myself every day to be grateful and focus on what I do have not what I don’t have. Make a list and read it to yourself every time you get down about life. Add to your list when new things come into your life. You will soon realize you have a lot to be grateful for.
Next time you go to pray or ask the universe for something, instead of saying please, say thank you! Thank you for this life. Thank you for another day on this earth. Thank you for my amazing family and friends. Thank you for all that I’ve been given in my life.