Let me start out by saying this was originally a long-ass Facebook Post. That’s how I do Facebook… longassed. Anyhow, I share this because the references will by stated from the mindset of these ideas being shared on Facebook, however although you can use them on Facebook or in person or anywhere, I wanted you to be aware where this article idea came from 12 months ago, today. Thank you for reading.
I appreciate you and hope you enjoy the journey!
I will also say before we jump into these ideas that I am thankful for my wife, Betsy, and her extreme patience with me, and also, her ability to teach me some of my own patience, as patience has never come easy to me. I love her dearly and feel blessed to have her in my life and walking the path with me. Now let’s jump in…
Gratitude for Gratitude.
I sometimes try to remember my life in an earlier state and cannot always recall how I’d respond to things or think about things. You know, wondering if my attitude, or how I handle things, has changed. Sometimes we never know, and sometimes we instantly know, right?
One thing I DO know is that finding gratitude for little things has certainly brought me much peace, more joy, and contentment in life. I often hear people state how negative social media can be, and that they are thinking of shutting down their account. Or, sometimes someone just acts in a very tense way and bears a lot of stress in real life.
At one point I would agree how negative social media is or has been, living a more stress filled life. The stress on both sides seems to be created by an idea of gaining or keeping control. When I started reading the Tao Te Ching (sometime around 2013, click the link to explore the text and multiple translations of it.), I was awakened to a new way to look at things. A way that starts to remove ego or the need for control. One where I was able to get more present in the moment (which is very hard for a visionary to do). I used meditation to perpetually find time to enjoy this present moment daily.
Both the meditation and the Tao pointed me to the importance of gratitude. Adding moments of thankfulness regularly can truly settle all the chaos in one’s life. As for social media’s craziness. Once you let go of the need to be right or control things, it is so much less negative. Then add the focus of gratitude (like being grateful of how many positive people I am connected to, or can connect with, or the number of influential people I can connect with that push me to be better, or that the social platforms can be used to ADD positivity to the world. Those are pretty big things if you take a moment to enjoy them.).
Then finding joy in stressful life situations. When things get tense, find the joy. Example: “damn I’m stuck in traffic. Boy, it is nice I get extra time to listen to my favorite music or audiobook.” Or right now my nose is stuffed up on the right side. This obviously makes meditative breathing tough. However, although the right is totally blocked right now, I am super thankful for the left being wide open. When was the last time you thought about appreciating your left nostril?
Look I’m no expert in happiness, but taking a minute to think about all we have, does help one bring more joy to their life. Give it a try. A year or two ago I started posting ‘Thankful Thursday’ posts to try to commit to adding positivity weekly to my own life. This slowly moved into gratitude posts, even more frequently, to try to find more consistent joy, because this idea seemed to be working. Maybe all of this is silly or maybe it is the life hack you’ve been seeking.
Give it a try and find out.
Share your thoughts below in the comments. Try these ideas out daily for a week and write your experience in the comments. We’d love to hear your story and experiences.