An Attitude of Gratitude

While Thanksgiving 2021 arrived and left, the spirit in which Thanksgiving shines a light on the ideal of living in gratitude is highly important. Beyond a holiday that brings families and friends together, focusing on having a general attitude of gratitude in your life should be a priority. For myself, I leaned into this practice more intensely when the pandemic began to weigh down on the world and it almost began feeling like a chore to ‘think positively,’ under such bleak and dire circumstances. I do believe there is such a thing as toxic positivity, where making ‘lemonade out of lemons’ takes a higher toll than the actual reward. Sometimes you need to see a spade for a spade and call it as such. It’s important to keep a realistic mindset always, however, that doesn’t mean you can’t achieve everything you dream about and more. The first step to really initializing how you reset your mindset (there should always be a mindset shift) when you pursue a new goal is to recognize how much you already have. For example, when I am motivated to work on my fitness goals, I think “I am grateful that I am healthy and physically able to exercise like this” rather than seeing any barriers to what I am hoping to achieve. If you enter your life everyday with an attitude of abundance, it’s as simple as recognizing that the day itself is actually a gift and we can never replicate the current day we are in again, you are also believing that your attitude of abundance will help you. Understanding the depth of gratitude and its power means you are equipped to stay motivated to know you are capable of going after what is perceived as “I don’t have.” It’s the psychology of knowing “I have” versus “I do not have.” Awareness is a critical part of gratitude. Being aware of what you have enables you to tap into recognizing how much you do have. The law of attraction plays a critical role in all of our lives. If you begin manifesting what you do not have as what you are going to have in your mind, instead of focusing on the not having it, you are well on your way to achievement! This is the concept of manifestation in practice.

On a much deeper and more existential level, the idea that we are not serving our own path per se, but that we are part of something much larger which is occurring in the universe is a deeply humbling and mystical thing. I believe that connecting with the idea of the ‘we actually don’t really know everything that’s out there in the universe’ can be empowering, because too often we can fall into a mindset of ‘I know I can’t have this or that,’ well… in reality, if we don’t fully know everything about the universe, then how could you possibly think that your individual life has such limitations? Each of us are the universe in a fragment. I personally think that it is likely we are not meant to know everything that is going on in the universe. If humanity knew everything about the universe, then we would be limiting our own possibilities, because ‘knowing everything’ is technically like a quantity. However, the universe’s possibilities are likely not quantifiable for a reason I believe.

There is an adorable Audrey Hepburn quote that quantifies this philosophy well:

“Nothing is impossible, the word itself says I’m possible” 

I’m possible is literally inside the word ‘impossible.’ As coincidental as that may be, it’s a fabulous way of recognizing how we are part of our own limitations sometimes through our attitudes. If we confront life with a deep gratitude for the gift of our life, for the people in our lives and for the opportunities which we can pursue, in whatever form that may be, we are on a path to living deeply enriching lives. While success may be determined in society by the ideals of capital gains and wealth accumulation and the idea that ‘being above’ someone else is enabled because of this, that is a mentality everyone should shed. The Earth itself is suffering from that mentality – climate change is one result. The best motivation is a deep intrinsic motivation that we can all tap into once we have focused on how much there is to be grateful for.

Each day I write a journal entry in a notebook that is a page filled of what I am grateful for. It can be anything, such as “I am grateful for another day,” or “I am grateful I am aware,” or even “I am grateful for this moment.” There is always something to be grateful for. If you maintain this, you will cultivate a deep sense of joy.

As large and expansive as the observable Universe is, it’s still finite, with a finite amount of information to teach us. Beyond that, the ultimate cosmic truths still remain unknown to us.

How Far Is It To The Edge Of The Universe?

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