Appreciation — A Full Understanding Of A Situation
I feel like gratitude has been overused in the *cute, but cheesy* quotes department. “Have an attitude of gratitude.” “Be grateful.” “Inhale love, exhale gratitude.” “A grateful heart sets you a part.”
By definition, gratitude is: “the quality of being thankful.”
Gratitude is a beautiful thing. I by no means want to lessen the importance of it. The thing is — I believe that people do this pretty well on the surface. We were trained to say “thank you” when someone opens the door for us, says “bless you” when we sneeze, + hands us our shopping bag. But how much are we truly feeling the emotion of gratitude when we say “thank you”? I know that many times I say “thank you” for these things on autopilot because I’m in a rush//distracted… onto the next thing. That’s not how I want to live my life.
Another example. Name three things you are grateful for. I bet you’d be able name three things in 0.1029837 seconds. But what if I told you to type a five page gratitude list in Microsoft Word — single space? Try it. I just did a five page gratitude list + it took me 50 minutes. Turn on some jazz music + just start listing whatever pops up in your mind. From “I’m thankful for my future husband” to “I’m thankful for my toothbrush” to “I’m thankful for the rain, especially when I’m sleeping,” it’s fun to see what you come up with.
Five pages is definitely a harder exercise than three lines, but I guarantee you can do it. But again… how often are you truly feeling gratitude for all of these items you just listed? I can’t remember the last time [if ever…] I was immensely grateful for my toothbrush — maybe at sleepovers as a kid when I would forget my toothbrush + have to use my finger instead [did anyone else do that…? : )]. We have so much to be grateful for, it’s beautifully overwhelming. We should be beaming every single second of every day. Instead, many of us accumulate item after item trying to satisfy our thirst for happiness, instead of turning inward + relishing in the abundance we already have.
“Gratitude is awareness that, as things come to you, they are exactly what you need — be it people, circumstances, or challenges.”
^ I love this — awareness that, as things come to you, they are exactly what you need.
We hear gratitude + appreciation used interchangeably a lot. But did you know that the definition of appreciation is: “a full understanding of a situation.” It’s awareness, consciousness, + understanding.
Appreciation is acknowledging the moment + taking it all in, THEN using our abilities to ~flow~ with the moment.
That’s the gold. That’s the work we need to do as individuals that will better our community. That’s where the energy shifts will happen. That’s how you’ll be able to FEEL + embody gratitude in all aspects of your life.
Just for fun, do a five page gratitude list. Once you are done, read each item out loud + pause for a few moments, feeling why you are grateful for each item. If your list is like mine, you’ll see how much joy you have in such simple things. We are so blessed!
Go throughout your week a little bit slower. Notice what you notice. Take moments throughout your day to *pause* [set a few alarms to remind you if that helps!] + see how you are living out your moments. During these pause periods, take a few deep breaths. Are you living on autopilot? Are you dwelling in negativity? Are you worrying about all your “ta dos”? Are you daydreaming about future plans? Or are you appreciating this moment, + working with it as best you can?
Rooting for you always — I am grateful for you all,