The Power of Gratitude
I know it's cliche to talk about gratitude and being thankful during the holiday season but I'm going to do it anyway. Not because of the time of year but because it's what's going on in my life. Last week I got into a funk. The day was "going bad" from the moment I woke up. I didn't sleep well because my mind was racing all night and wouldn't let me sleep and when I woke up I was exhausted. I went to work but didn't feel like doing much of anything. It was like no matter what someone said I could put a negative spin on it. I didn't like being in the funk, I don't think anyone enjoys a bad day, but there wasn't much I could do except let myself feel down.
Towards the end of the day I was able to analyze my bad mood a bit and realized all of the things I was unhappy about were rooted in a lack of gratitude. I felt like everything in my life was wrong instead of remembering everything in my life that was right. I wanted money, but didn't have enough, so I was ungrateful. I wanted to plan out the next couple years of my life, but couldn't, so I was upset. I looked into my future and saw more time in college which equates to not earning a lot of money and acquiring more debt to pay off later. Everything about my life felt gloomy.
Once I analyzed how I was feeling, I realized that instead of thinking about the things I wanted but couldn't have, I should try focusing on what I did have and the things within my control. I made myself make a list of things I was thankful for and have done that several times in the last week. When I shifted my mind from the negative to the positive, my whole mood lifted and my perspective changed! I started thinking about the things I have and realized I have everything I truly need. I started appreciating the moments that I was living in instead of getting frustrated trying to plan my future. I prayed to God that He'd help me feel content, and He did. I may not have everything I want but I am blessed because I have everything I need.
It's easy to get stuck thinking about the things we want and forget what we have. God has a purpose for each stage of our lives. Sometimes He lets us have a lot, sometimes He makes us make do with very little. However, it doesn't matter which stage of life we're in, as long as we keep our eyes on God and have a heart of gratitude we will have everything we need. Enjoy whatever phase of life you're in, don't give up on your dreams, just remember to appreciate each day.