Nov 11, 2014

8 Little Ways to Cultivate Gratitude When Everything Goes Wrong

Recently I’ve experienced a terrible period of failures in my life. I quit my job (actually I was fired), my relationship collapsed after many years of being together and I realized that I had to train for a new career. Life just seemed to be a chain of problems that would never end. I know that there is always something positive in every situation, but I couldn’t see any benefits of having hard times and I felt absolutely resentful and tired. However, such a stressful situation appeared to be a booster of positive changes in my personality and in my life. When everything goes wrong you shouldn’t think that you’re ill-fated. Instead, you should pull yourself together and be grateful for everything you have.

1. Be grateful for your health

A good health is something people tend to ignore unless they’re ill. In fact, it’s a good health that enables you to work, accomplish your everyday activities and live a happy life. It’s a blessing if you can walk, move your fingers, see the colors of this world and even breathe. I’ve realized that health is the foundation of my life and personality; it was given me for free and I have no right to be ungrateful for this gift. As long as I’m strong and healthy, life isn’t that difficult as it may seem.

2. Be grateful for your parents and family

Recently I’ve come across a very truthful quote about family by Jim Butcher, “When everything goes to hell, the people who stand by you without flinching – they are your family.” Sure, not all people are lucky to have strong family bonds or close and warm relationship with their parents. However, when you have difficulties, your parents are usually the first people to help and support you both emotionally and financially. When I had hard times, my mom was beside me to give a wise advice and encourage me with a kind word. Remember that your family will never let you down even when you experience tough times.

3. Be grateful for negative experience and challenges

When you feel overwhelmed with problems, it’s difficult to find something positive about it. However, the ability to appreciate challenges and difficulties is critical for handling stress. Hard times make you a strong and mature person; they build your character, endurance and persistence. In fact, hard times teach people to appreciate the current state of things. My own difficulties appeared to be a great starting point of a new life and only now I’ve realized the importance of all those obstacles and setbacks.

Read also – 7 Things to Do When Your Life Falls Apart

4. Appreciate little things

When you’re submerged with problems it’s hard to switch your attention for a second and admire the beauty of this world. However, those ordinary yet marvelous things are everywhere around us. Smiles on the faces of your friends, the flavor of delicious food, cool morning wind and the sunset are all great things to be grateful for. Even a compliment from your colleague can boost your spirit and make your day. Things that make us happy are frequently given to us for free. Learn to notice and appreciate those little acts of kindness that this world gives you.

5. It might have been worse

Every person thinks that his or her problems are always the worst and I was no exception. It happens because of people’s egoism. Look around and you’ll see that you’re much luckier than most people. Your problems are quite amendable with little desire and efforts. You may not believe it, but the situation might have been much worse than it is. Everything in this life is highly relative and for someone else your problems might seem nonsense. Try to imagine the worst scenario of the situation and you’ll definitely realize that you’re not so unhappy than you may think.

6. You always have a choice

Believe it or not, you always have a choice and this is one more thing to be grateful for, when you experience hard times. Every new day is a new chance to change your life. I’ve been unemployed for quite a long time since I had to retrain. But I had a choice: either I pull myself together and push forward or I continue complaining about life. Even in the no-go situation you always have some options. Sometimes you just refuse to see the alternative because it’s less pleasant or harder or it takes you too much effort.

7. Stop comparing your life with others

When everything goes wrong, your life seems to be unbearable in comparison with life of others. If you still think so, you should immediately get rid of this thought. You never know what the life of other people looks from the inside. You never have a complete understanding of their problems and pain, that’s why you cannot say that their life is easier. Perhaps, your own life also seems to be a pretty good thing. Try to mind your own business and never compare your fortunes and misfortunes with those of other people.

Read also – 10 Habits That Can Steal Your Happiness

8. Get rid of resentment

I felt utterly resentful and unappreciated as if I didn’t deserve a better life. But the feeling of resentment prevents you from being grateful for what you have. It’s like a vicious circle. You shouldn’t think that it’s a bad luck, try to accept the hard times as a coincidence. Consider the situation as a valuable challenge to test your character and willpower. Try to divide your life into essential facets like career, parenting, health, friendship, finance and everything you consider important. You’ll see that you have to improve only particular areas of life.

The attitude of gratitude is crucial for getting through hard times and coping with your temporary difficulties. No matter how troublesome your life may be at times, you shouldn’t throw your hands up in despair. Every setback offers some advantages to be grateful for. Once you realize it, you’ll have a more positive outlook.

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