The best way to #GetGrateful for your current situation is to stop bitchin’ about what you don’t have. You can’t be thankful if you’re constantly complaining. It’s crazy how much power our words hold. And even crazier still the control our thoughts have on our words, emotions, and future.
If you don’t believe me, take a few minutes to think about all the things you don’t like about your life at this present moment. Write them down. Then ask yourself: Have those issues gotten worse or better over time? My guess is they have not gotten better. So when they started going sideways, can you recall stressing about them? Obsessing until you felt physically ill at times? Did you talk about those problems with your friends and family or anyone who would listen? Did you tweet about them? Write a negative status update about them on Facebook? Find a quote that really stuck it to the person you were mad at and posted it on Instagram? We’ve all done it. I’m as guilty as the next person, but what was the outcome? Did your problems magically fix themselves by doing any of those things? Did they make you feel better, or eventually worse?
Think about your list of problems for a minute. Do they occupy the majority of your mind space? If so, then you are in a downward, self-fulfilling-prophecy spiral. What you’ve thought about, and talked about, has become your daily reality.
Think on that a minute.
By complaining about your problems, verbalizing them, and allowing your feelings associated with those thoughts and words to change your mood, or even make you physically ill, you have actually made those problems bigger. Instead of solving them, you’ve made them much worse. Because you are responsible for your problems. I know, ouch.
The purpose of gratitude is to make us aware and present in our lives, to teach us not to take anything for granted. It’s so easy to get caught up in our daily life and forget all the good things that are part of our environment. Gratitude lets you reconnect with all of that—it keeps you present in the moment and focused on your goal.
As you move through the steps of the #HBRMethod you’ll find there will be times on your journey when you seem to be stuck in a rut, or when things aren’t turning out as planned, that will be your indication that you’ve let your gratitude practice slide. Don’t let it slide.
*Excerpt from Hustle Believe Receive, by Sarah Centrella, Skyhorse Publishing