A blog to help you dig deep and feel good.
Ever wondered why it seems harder to stay positive these days, and yet negative thoughts seem to be in plentiful supply? It's not your fault! As humans, we are wired to look for threats - this is actually a thing - it's called the Negativity Bias. Our primeval ancestors, who faced daily threats of being eaten by sabre-toothed tigers, had to get really good at looking out for these threats in order to survive. Nowadays, we still face threats, but we don't often face situations that would require our fight or flight instincts to kick in.
Or so you'd think!
Our brains are still wired to look out for threats, which is why we find it so easy to slip into negative mindsets, assume the worst, focus on what's going wrong and complain about things. Even the media (in general) is on board with this - when was the last time you turned on the News and saw a good news story?
So if we want to tip the scales in favour of postivity, we have to work a lot harder. How? By focusing on what's going right. Gratitude Practice to the rescue!
Let's start a Positivity Bias!
Being present with all the amazing things that are going right, if taken in context and consideration, can really help lighten your load and brighten your day. There is now scientific proof that practicing Gratitude regularly can improve your wellbeing in many ways.
Did you know that in order for us to simply see, over 2 million working parts need to function correctly, and that’s just in the eye, never mind the brain! That’s 2 million potential chances for something to go wrong! And yet for most of us, the 2 million working parts hit the bullseye, every single day!
So much GOES RIGHT for us every single day. I challenge you to list 3 things now that went right for you to be able to read this blog.
Here are mine:
The muscles in my hands functioning free from impediment
The money I earned to enable me to buy my laptop
Having a job that pays enough for me to have a rest day at the weekend.
There is no certainty about where life will take us next. But one thing I AM certain of is this:
We are incredibly lucky to be alive.
We may not feel this embrace of luck and universal love everyday – especially when things don’t go as we wish. But there are many things that DO go right (for most) every single day, like the daily miracles of our senses processing vital information that not only enables us to live freely, and enhance our lives in so many magical ways. Think about what you eat, read, listen to, watch, smell and sense!
So here’s the deal, Gandhi told me to be the change I wish to see in the world.
I wish for more joy in the world. And I know how to make it happen.
I have learned that, for me at least, being more conscious of the daily miracles that form the infrastructure of our busy lives, promotes a sense of peace and calm when the rollercoaster makes a turn. But it’s not easy, at least until you develop it into a habit. Which is why I’m writing.
We can do this together. We're all on the same team anyway, right?
Just to be clear, I’m not suggesting that if something isn’t meeting your needs that you should smile and gloss over what’s missing. I’m saying look a little closer to see what IS GOING RIGHT and rejoice in it, at least to help you feel better – that feeling better is a bridge to helping you deal with what isn’t going right.
You could start with (and please forgive the assumptions here):
Did a roof prevent you from getting cold and wet in the night?
Was there food for breakfast this morning? Something to cook it on?
Did you have to walk miles to get to work this morning, or was there a bus/train/magic carpet ready and waiting to whisk you there?
Did your car start? If it didn’t, was there someone you could call?
Did you wake up with all your senses intact, enabling you to experience the full wonders of the waking world?
Did technological advances make it quick and easy for you to communicate with people you love or access information that would otherwise have taken hours? *
So let’s dig up the things without which we would be at best inconvenienced, or at worst truly lost. I invite you to wake up every day and celebrate that yes, you made it through the night and have been one of the fortunate human beings to have another shot at this short life. Yes, there may be a hole in the roof. Yes, there may be annoying digging going on while you’re trying to work. But how about you do some digging of your own? Join me as I dig into the nourishing life lessons I can appreciate through the eyes of Gratitude.
Dig into your Gratitude Goldmine — it won’t let you down, you just have to be willing to dig a little deeper sometimes.
Yours in Gratitude,
Disclaimer: The views expressed here are that of the writer. They are reflections on what has worked for her and are in no way meant to imply or state that they are guaranteed to work for you, the reader. The writer’s intention for this blog is to share her learnings to bring more light to the world. Readers are still responsible for their own actions. Come on, you knew that.
* If the answer to any of the above questions is No, then of course, I sympathise. I have to make the assumption that if you have the ability to read this blog then this exercise is appropriate for you. No offence is intended here.