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How To Find Gratitude Under Any Circumstance

Posted by Gena Beck on Nov 19, 2019

Yup. It’s November. A time of Thanksgiving. A time when we are reminded often, we need to have gratitude. What about when there are so many things that happen in our lives for which we are truly not grateful? You know what I mean; the flat tire, the pipe that burst, the computer that went haywire, the mistake at the bank, the need to call Comcast. The list is endless. 

How about the more serious things? Not enough money to keep the lights on, a child with a serious illness, no healthcare, losing a job, the death of a loved one.

I have been in many of these situations, and more, as I am sure you have. It is not that I find myself grateful for these things, exactly. It is that I have learned I can find gratitude in all situations, but I must look for it.  Here is an example of what I mean:

My husband, and our son’s father, passed away from cancer in 2015. Nope. Not grateful.

Gratitude:

  • My husband is no longer in pain.

  • I was able to tell my husband I was spiritually fit to raise our son, and that it was ok for him to go. A man I loved was on this earth for the time that he was, and I was given the gift of spending much of that time with him.

  • A man I loved was on this earth for the time that he was, and I was given the gift of spending much of that time with him.

  • Our son had a fabulous father.

  • I got to see our son give the most unselfish gift I have ever seen anyone give; his father permission to go, telling him that he and I would be ok.

  • Seeing the multitude of lives my husband impacted. There were literally hundreds and hundreds of people at his funeral.

  • I was there for him until the end.

  • I had the opportunity to be of service to our son and my husband’s parents, as well as his best friend.

  • I saw and experienced healed relationships. 

  • The experience of having our son’s friends show up and sleepover with us the night his father died.

There is so much more I could add to the list. Those 10 are only the beginning. 

Daily writing in a Gratitude Journal is a habit I started in early recovery from alcoholism, and it has helped me to survive many a trying situation. For me, taking a pen to paper is essential. It makes everything more real. When I write down what I am grateful for, I get the gift of getting through the day with some semblance of serenity, grace, and dignity, no matter what is going on. It gives me a level of acceptance I know I would not find otherwise. I don’t do this perfectly. I am no spiritual giant. However, I know one thing for certain. I am a better person when I am practicing gratitude. I am happier with myself and others, I am less likely to cause harm. I am more compassionate, and I am less judgmental. I am the one in power, not the situation. That’s good enough for me. 

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5 comments


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  • I’ve said it before, but it can be said again – you have a brave and beautiful soul and I am so so very grateful to know Jean.

    Francesca Lobban on

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