But what can help you tumble through the change and come out on the other side relatively unscathed? Gratitude. In my opinion, being grateful for all the things that you have in that moment of time, even if they are tiny, seemingly insignificant things, can help you see the silver lining. Maybe there are not “huge” things to be grateful for, but what about the fact that you can walk? That you have shoes on your feet? That we live on a planet where the sun shines and the birds sing? That you have access to food and water most of the day? These focused nuggets of gratitude can help the bigger picture seem more manageable.
It’s hard to be upset about something changing when you realize how much you really do have. Adding up all the little things helps to put the bigger things in perspective. Perspective is something I often struggle with (hence the whine). I am too quick to focus on the negative tiny parts and then instantly blow everything out of proportion. It’s kind of my thing 😉
When Anthony and I moved into our new apartment, my friend Terry gave us a Gratitude Jar. The Gratitude Jar is simple – a plain jar that you can put tiny slips of paper in throughout the year. Each slip becomes a snapshot of something you were grateful for during the year. At the end of the year, you get some wine (right, Terry?) and read all of your slips of paper. It’s a great reminder of how much we have to be grateful for and the positives of that year! They seriously don’t have to be big things; they can even be about the weather.
Our Jar came with these directions:
Fill your jar all year long with things that you are grateful for. It can be ANYTHING, big or small, person, place, or thing. ANYTHING. At the end of 2014, sit down and read what is in your jar. Enjoy.
At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us. Albert Schweitzer