Gratitude: How to Celebrate What You Have Instead of What You Lack

Have you ever noticed that Western holidays bring into focus what you lack?

Have you ever noticed that Western holidays bring into focus what you lack?

I mean, Valentine’s day is awesome if you have a partner who is into outward demonstrations of love, but for many, it’s just a reminder that their relationship isn’t all that, if they have one at all.

I’ve had Valentine’s Days where I’ve been showered in flowers and chocolates and days where nothing happened at all. The worst one was when a new romance was abruptly squashed by a would-be love interest. I got over that eventually. What else was there to do? However, the memory of that day still surfaces on Valentine’s Day.

Of course, holidays don’t have to be a reminder of all that you lack or loves lost. They are, in fact, a golden opportunity to reflect on what you do have and to be present with the people in your life now.

So, this Valentine’s Day, I invite you to disrupt the commercialism and discard any expectations of how things should be and celebrate what you have.

  1. To get started, write a list of all the things and experiences you have received today. It could be “found 50 cents on the sidewalk” or it could be “a hug from my 12-year-old.” Whatever it is, write it down.
  2. Next, spend 5 minutes reflecting on that list. What do you notice about how you feel?
  3. Acknowledge others and express your gratitude to the people in your life who have contributed to you. You never know what conversations may unfold as a result.
  4. Lastly, acknowledge yourself for taking the time to reflect on what you’ve received. We often forget to show gratitude to ourselves for the seemingly tiny, insignificant breakthroughs we have on a daily basis.

While these steps may seem kinda corny, I can attest to their power.

I started journaling what I’ve received a couple of weeks ago and it has really helped me see how rich my life is. The result of that is I don’t whine as much and believe me, everybody is grateful for that. :-)

When you practice giving thanks for everything you have received in life, it can completely alter your perspective. My thoughts are that if more people did this, we would all be happier, healthier and able to generate what we want in life.

What are your thoughts? What are you grateful for at the moment? Share your list in the comments below.

ps: This post was created to kick off the February Great Blog Challenge. Join the fun here.