The Art of Being Grateful


We're not grateful because we're happy, we're happy because we're grateful. We wait for things to be thankful for, when really, we're better off searching for things to be thankful for in our everyday. We can be thankful for the oxygen in our lungs, the internet access we have, the fact that we have some real friends, or that our Instagram crush just posted a new pic in a drool-worthy outfit. There's no shortage of things we can appreciate, it's a choice we can make at any time. When I say good things happen to those who appreciate, I'm not promising a winning lottery ticket, or a cute boy's phone number. I'm saying when we search for beauty in life, we'll see more of the beauty that was already there the whole time. Gratitude is the opposite of self-pity and complaining, so cut down on those and you'll see positive results in less than a week. Don't believe me? Go two days without complaining and see how your life starts to feel better. Finding reasons to be thankful isn't as easy as finding things to complain about. Our brains are designed to ignore what's going well and focus on what's going wrong; that's how we survived in the wild for a millennia. We're no longer in the wild, and our brains are slow to adapt. We always see what's wrong and notice the work other people do when they stop doing it. Once we're aware of this, we can make more effort to actively be more appreciative and grateful, whether that's doing a journal, or setting a reminder on our phone. It's easier not to do this stuff, but easy things are rarely worth it.

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