2020 has not been the best year for most of us. The pandemic has not only taken more than a million lives, it has also devastated the economy which affected our jobs and forced us to change our normal way of living. But the Coronavirus was not the only thing that ruined our year. Shocking events have unfolded one after another as the year went by. We have witnessed bushfires, the death of an NBA legend, the massive explosion in Lebanon, ongoing wars, racial crises, and many more. Safe to say, 2020 has been one of the worst years that we’ve had in a very long time.
Amidst all these difficult scenarios, how does someone keep the positivity alive? How do we see the good in the bad? And most importantly, how does someone keep a gratitude mindset?
What is the Gratitude Mindset?
Gratitude is defined as ‘the state of being grateful’ or ‘thankfulness.’ Thus, having a gratitude mindset is constant focus and appreciation of what you have rather than paying attention to the things that you don’t. People with a gratitude mindset live their lives being motivated by growth in every aspect, no matter what comes along in their lives or how tough things get. Their overall perspective is shaped by the belief that life is a privilege, so they live each day as positively and productively as they can.
Gratitude in Times of Difficulties
Gratitude plays a very significant role when going through adversities in life. Apart from helping you see the positive things more clearly, it can turn things around and transform bad circumstances into fresh opportunities. It allows you to take a closer look at your situation and deal with it in a more creative and meaningful way. When you handle everything with a grateful heart, closed doors will become new windows, and rejections will become great chances.
So how do you practice the Gratitude Mindset?
- Treat each day as a gift.
Reminding yourself of the great things you have as soon as you wake up is giving yourself a positive start to your day. As you go through tasks and responsibilities, you are filled with feelings of hope, happiness and peace. During tough days, sometimes we bring stress, fatigue, or anxiety with us from one day to the next. Instead, try to set your day up for success and allow each day to be a new opportunity for something good to happen.
- Express gratitude.
Saying ‘thank you’ to the people who matter most is a simple yet wonderful expression of gratitude, among other ways. This will not only give you a lighter feeling of appreciation, it can also help you build a stronger relationship with others. Pausing to offer a ‘thank you’ or do something kind can have a strong impact on your mindset in addition to those around you.
- Make a gratitude list.
This list doesn’t have to be done in one sitting. It can be like a journal that gets updated every time you encounter something to be thankful for, such as a new experience, an unexpected visit from a dear friend, a new pair of shoes, or even a newly discovered recipe! Every time you go through something unbearable, look through the pages and regain your gratitude mindset. Taking note of the positives can help them outweigh any negatives that arise.
- Try not to complain.
During tough times, it’s very easy to complain and express disappointment about what’s going on. However, doing this just takes your focus away from the things that you should be thankful for. As you complain, you give negativity a chance to take over your thoughts, which can result to destructive emotions and bad decisions.
Gratitude is like a weapon, especially for those who are going through sobriety and recovery. It can also help people experiencing depression with anxiety. Being thankful can renew your strength, knowing that despite the fear and uncertainties in your life, there are still certain aspects that you can hold on to in order to continue moving forward.