Why I keep a Gratitude Journal

Why keep a Gratitude Journal, you ask? Well, maybe you didn’t ask; but I’ll tell you anyway. In a world of negativity, it is extremely difficult to keep a positive attitude. Wars, the negative political climate, economics, unemployment, hunger, etc. can weigh us down and make us feel that life isn’t worth living. I’m here to tell you that life is well worth living. There are so many good things happening, and there is beauty all around us, if we would only see.

It’s easy to sit on the pity pot and ask why me? It’s a lot harder, at least at first, to ask why not? When good things happen, we seem to take them for granted and only pay attention when bad things happen. Let’s change that. I have been keeping my Gratitude Journal online for over four months, and before that, I kept one on paper. It has made a tremendous difference in my attitude; and that’s what life is – attitude. We can’t change or control outside events, but we can control how we react to them. When we are surrounded by negativity we can do one of two things: we can allow that negativity to consume us and drag us down; or we can continue to be positive by focusing on what is good in our lives.

I only post 3 things every day that I am thankful for, and some days it’s hard to find even one. I don’t think anyone is immune to the negative clouds wafting in our direction every day. But once I start writing I find it’s sometimes hard to keep the list to only three. I invite you to view my Gratitude Journal at: http://newbeginninggratitudejournal.blogspot.com/ and perhaps even start one of your own. The items on the list don’t have to be big things.

One day, I was stuck in traffic coming home from work. I have learned to be patient and not lose my cool about taking longer to get home. When I pulled up to the last intersection by my house, an accident was in the clearing stages. If I had been on time driving home, that could have been me being carried away in an ambulance after my car was totalled. So it’s all in how we view things.

Maintain an Attitude of Gratitude!

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Abundance

Abundance. What is it and how can we get it?

Abundance is defined as a very plentiful or more than sufficient quantity; overflowing fullness; affluence or wealth. I like the thought that is is a plentiful or overflowing fullness. We all have an abundance of something. I like to think I have enough of everything.

There was a time when I focused only on what I didn’t have; I was very unhappy. I would look at other people and wish I had what they had, whether it was a new car, a big house, more than enough money, or just plain being happy. Over the years, I came to the realization that I was just making myself miserable by comparing my life to anyone else’s. I used to be resentful when someone else got their dream job, their perfect mate, a beautiful home.

Eventually I realized I was making myself ill with resentment, literally. I suffered severe depression as a young adult.


Over a period of time, I changed my attitude. It didn’t happen overnight; I didn’t wake up one morning with a new way of thinking. And there are still times when I catch myself feeling a little bit jealous. But I have discovered I am genuinely happy when good things happen to my friends. And even though times are hard, I have enough money to pay for what I need. I am content with my life.

I have been called a ‘pollyanna’ by some who don’t understand that a positive attitude can make all the difference to how your day goes. Bad things still happen: I have car problems; things go wrong at work or at home; but I don’t wallow in what I call the ‘why me?’ frame of mind as I once used to do. My car breaks down? At least I have a car. Someone at work does something stupid? At least I have a job. Something breaks down at home? At least I have a place to live.

I have dear friends in my life, a partner to share my life with, and two furry children who make me laugh.

I feel so blessed to have such abundance in my life.