It doesn't take much for me to cultivate an attitude of gratitude: all I have to do is think back to a Thanksgiving in my early 20's when I had been so heaped with misfortune and spiritual blindness that I couldn't think of a single thing to be grateful for. I was sinking into a deep depression, and it would take a miracle to get me out of it.
Has anyone else been in so dark a place?
Of course you have - we all struggle.
I kept trying on different glasses with which to see the world, but until I learned and believed that a miracle can be as simple as a change in perspective, a change in attitude, I would keep falling back into the darkness.
Cynics may roll their eyes and say that I don't live in real world, but I disagree. How can there only be one reality, one truth? How can cultivating an attitude of gratitude and a relationship with a Higher Power be anything but courageous?
Being in a state of gratitude is a daily practice, and I often miss the mark because, well, shit does happen, right? In our own lives and on a global scale - murder, war, suicide, natural disasters like Sandy, cruelty.
So we make a decision to practice kindness. We make a decision to live in the moment, because tomorrow it could all be gone. We make the decision that things - like computers (broke mine) manuscripts (lost mine) don't make us who we are. When I focus on the small irritations - our house isn't finished yet . . .we can't go on vacation like x, y and z . . . I'm overweight . . . they become larger than life and paralyze me from feeling grateful. When I focus on wanting what I have already, I experience abundance. When I remember how I was lifted out of a truly dark and terrible place by a new pair of glasses, there's nothing left but gratitude.
I have wonderful friends, a family that I cherish, work that is fulfilling, and an inner life that nurtures my creativity and keeps me writing no matter what.
So yes, I am putting on my rose-colored glasses not to be a Pollyana, but as a conscious choice to view the world as a place of abundance. Life is short!
What glasses are you wearing?