If we only notice what is wrong in our lives, instead of what is right, we cannot tap into gratitude. Happiness is transient. If we are on an endless, constant search for happiness, it will lead to sadness when faced with the reality that there will always be a balance between negative and positive.
The negatives often speak louder, drowning out what we should cherish. Fear and anger can also push gratitude aside. Beyond remembering what is good and positive, we also need to be grateful for the negatives. This can be a difficult concept to live by, yet to be alive is to experience the light and the dark.
There is gratitude in being here to travel your path, no matter how difficult. That is key to truly understanding gratitude and practicing compassion for yourself and others. It is the attitude you have towards living in the bigger picture and totality of life, instead of just seeing parts of it, that brings you peace of mind and joy.
You don’t have to deny the challenges that life presents in order to be grateful. Whatever feelings arise from our struggles, disappointments and losses are valid, yet if we practice gratitude we can tap into the acceptance of times that are difficult. Gratitude helps us in any moment or situation by bringing balance. It opens our mind and our heart to a bigger purpose and meaning of life. Gratitude for our challenges doesn’t mean we have to accept and act on everything. We can draw strength to do good for others and ourselves from the ability to effect change and spread love. The world would be a better place if gratitude were truly a part of everyone’s lives.