3 Ways to Harness Gratefulness in Every Experience (Even the Bad Ones)
Are you guilty of saying one of the following —
“Write three things you’re grateful for daily!”
“Be grateful for all you have!”
“Look around and have gratitude for everything around you!”
“It’s easy to be grateful!”
Without a doubt, gratitude is a contributor to spiritual transformation, and when we are grateful for things we already have, we attract more of what we desire.
Gratitude is certainly a simple way to add more joy, abundance, and fulfillment to your life.
However, sometimes when you get caught up in the buzz around gratitude, it’s easy to forget that having gratitude can sometimes be challenging.
When it comes to feeling thankful, it’s much easier to feel grateful for some things or experiences more than others.
The important thing to realize about gratitude is that you can always find it. You can find it in happiness, you can find it in the sadness, you can find it in the celebration, and you can find it in the struggle.
We must look for it and challenge ourselves to experience gratitude in different ways.
When it comes down to it, know that it’s okay to feel like it’s difficult to conjure up gratitude for some things that occur in your life.
What’s important is that somewhere in your heart, you’re able to find gratitude, eventually.
3 WAYS TO HARNESS GRATEFULNESS IN EVERY EXPERIENCE (EVEN THE BAD ONES)
1. EASY GRATITUDE
This is the gratitude you feel in your heart often. The appreciation that is consistent. It’s the things you’re grateful for, and maybe because of that, you take them for granted from time to time.
It’s the thankfulness you have for your family, the roof over your head, the food on your table, and each breath you take.
It’s those things that you say, “Well, of course, I’m grateful for those!”
It’s the easy gratitude you have for the people, things, or experiences in your life that you can quickly jot down in a journal when prompted to write “3 Things You’re Grateful For.”
2. HINDSIGHT GRATITUDE
Hindsight gratitude is the stuff you are grateful for NOW but weren’t when you experienced it.
It’s the time you thought your soulmate broke up with you only to find out that someone even better for you was waiting right around the corner. NOW you’re beyond grateful to have your partner and couldn’t imagine life without him or her.
It’s the time you got fired from your job, which pushed you to become a Health Coach entrepreneur. It was scary and felt uncertain at the time, but now you LOVE being your own boss and running your wildly successful health coaching business.
It’s the time a loved one passed away after battling an illness. Now that they have passed, you rest better knowing they are no longer in pain. While you miss them dearly, you’re grateful they are at peace.
3. THE GRATITUDE STRUGGLE
Finding gratitude under challenging circumstances can seem nearly impossible. You’ve probably experienced this before. It’s what you experience before you’re able to gift thanks in hindsight.
It’s those experiences that you feel little to no gratitude for. The times in life when you can’t fathom trying to find something to be thankful for — as though it wouldn’t be right to allow yourself to be grateful for something like this.
It’s when you experience loss, when something doesn’t work out as you had planned, or when you or a loved one suffers pain or trauma.
It’s in these moments where you have to surrender into the power of gratitude the most.
It’s these experiences that guide you to dig deep and cultivate even the tiniest amount of gratitude. When you apply gratitude to a traumatic situation or experience, that’s when you transform it into something beautiful. That’s when you grow as a human being.
Next time you find yourself contemplating gratitude, take a moment and see how you have experienced each kind of gratitude.
Once you are aware of the different ways you can experience gratitude, you’ll find you can harness it to transform any situation and cultivate a heart full of not only gratitude but abundance.
Want more on gratitude?
Head here to learn some gratitude affirmations to transform your health!
Want even more? Give Shawn Stevenson’s podcast about The Science of Gratitude a listen!