Life is full of ups and downs, and while some seasons may bring joy and happiness, others may bring challenges and hardships. However, it is during these difficult times that being thankful becomes even more crucial. Expressing gratitude can help us to shift our perspective, find solace, and keep hope alive.
When I was a child, we didn’t have an easy life and we were going through hardships day by day because both of my parents lost their jobs. We were living off their savings and they couldn’t get a job because of a scandal that was blamed on them, they were jobless for 5 years. We were always on a tight budget and I always hated that my friends had things that I couldn’t have. One day I complained to my mother and she said to me: “Our life isn’t much now, but it will be better. You should be thankful that you can still eat full meals”
I didn’t know if she really believed that at that time but I just could see that she was forcing her tears back because of what I said. Since then, I’ve started appreciating what I had and tried stopping to envy people. It wasn’t easy at first, seeing your friends have their fancy Gameboy machines and I couldn’t even have a keypad phone to play Snake on.
Bit by bit, it grew on me. It essentially made me a more open-minded and cheerful person. The good news though, we eventually got out of that situation and is now ‘in progress’ to a better life. The mindset just grew on me, what you have in your mind reflects on everything that you do. It gave me so much positivity and motivation to be thankful every day and appreciate even the scarring hardships that came by.
So, with that long story, I want to explore with you some practical ways to cultivate a sense of gratitude, see the beauty in difficult times, and find reasons to be thankful despite the challenges we face.
1.) Practice Mindfulness:
Take a moment each day to breathe deeply, observe the sensations around you, and appreciate the simple things in life. This will help you develop a deeper sense of gratitude and appreciation during difficult times.
2.) Focus on Personal Growth
Difficult times often present an opportunity for growth and self-discovery. Embrace these challenges as an invitation to become stronger, more resilient, and adaptable. When you focus on personal development, you shift your mindset from feeling victimized to becoming empowered.
3.) Reflect on the Lessons Learned
Reflect on the experiences and setbacks you’ve encountered, and consider what you have learned from them. Did you gain a deeper understanding of yourself? Have you discovered new skills or strengths? Reflecting on the lessons learned allows you to appreciate the growth and transformation that can arise from challenging situations.
4.) Give Back
By showing compassion and making a positive impact in the lives of others, we realize how fortunate we are and become thankful for the opportunity to make a difference.
Being thankful in difficult times does not come naturally, but with practice, it can become a way of life. By embracing gratitude and shifting our focus, we can find beauty in the midst of challenges. By staying connected to our support system, focusing on personal growth, and reflecting on the lessons learned, we cultivate a resilient spirit. Let us remember to be grateful for the strength that we gain, the lessons that transform us, and the opportunities for growth that every difficulty brings. Choose gratitude today, and watch how it transforms your outlook on life.