Cultivating Gratitude


I am guilty of taking a vacation from this blog, coming back with every intent of  creating new posts, only to find myself vacationing again. So shall it be typed, and so shall it be done, I will make every effort to offer one new post a week. That’s manageable, no? I missed and miss blogging. I missed reading my fellow bloggers’ posts. I was happy to sign in and see a fellow blogger left a comment on of my older posts. Thank you!

One of the things I was thinking  of while signing into my account (last time was six months ago, too long, I know) was about cultivating gratitude-the act of being mindful and grateful and not just at one given time but daily. I strive to cultivate gratitude daily; I remind myself of my blessings. The more I experience and see, the more I am thankful for good vibrations, genuine thoughts and sentiments, and positive vibes. It’s soooo easy to be negative, and yes, there are a dozen of reasons why, justifiable so, one could be, but it’s even easier to be happy.

We need more happy people in the world. How can we, me, or you, assist with people’s happiness? The catch is, people are responsible for their own happiness. Yes, responsible. Although a person cannot control what life may throw at him or her, he or she can control how one reacts to it. While there are things that happen to someone that he or she doesn’t choose, life is still about choices. People have choices. So, why does it seem like so many choose unhappiness?

If I surveyed ten random people at public place (restaurant, park, beach etc), and said,”hi, tell me everything you wish would improve, or “tell me everything that’s going wrong in your life,” I’d get a list of things, immediately, but if I walked up to ten people and asked “tell me ten things you’re grateful for,”  I can guarantee the list wouldn’t come so easily. Why is it we, as a society, seem to be programmed for negativity?

If someone has a friend who posts a status update listing all of the great things he or she did this weekend, for the most part the reception would be positive because it would be the first post. If this same friend continued to post positive messages, gushy status updates of admiration for a significant other, and other reasons to be happy, the response won’t be as warm and would probably be received with an eye-roll or some thoughts like, “yeah, right so-and-so is happy, it’s probably just for show; it’s probably just for social media.”

If this same friend posted a series of negative status updates, that friend’s misery wouldn’t be questioned, instead it would almost be celebrated, by those friends who really aren’t friends and take joy out of seeing someone, anyone despondent, mainly because these friends  are discontent about something(s) in their lives. Terrible, isn’t it?

So, what does all of this have to do with cultivating gratitude? Well, the brief scenarios I described create noise; they attempt to take away from cultivating gratitude; they attempt to dull a person’s shine and decrease their happiness.

Don’t fall in someone or someone’s quicksand of negativity. Don’t allow a bad moment make for an entirely bad day. Don’t feel guilty for being happy. Don’t feel the need to prove your happiness. Don’t feel like you need to prove your gratitude. Don’t let anyone make you doubt your character, your worth, your heart.

Be mindful. Be nice because you are nice, not because other’s aren’t. Create a jar and fill it daily with things you were grateful for that day then at the end of the year you’ll have 365+ things to re-visit and be grateful for all over again.

Cultivating gratitude never expires.





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