In this new article you’ll learn why gratitude is important in our life.
Medieval German theologian and philosopher Meister Eckhart once said:
To the quiet mind all things are possible. What is a quiet mind? A quiet mind is one which nothing weighs on, nothing worries, which, free from ties and from all self-seeking, is wholly merged into the will of God and dead to its own.
In other words, a quiet mind is the mind that has attained unconditional happiness. He also said this:
If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, “thank you,” that would suffice.
Why Gratitude Is Important In Our Life:
Gratitude is very closely related to appreciation, but the difference is that appreciation is a singular, separate action while gratitude is a cultivated attitude and tendency for appreciation. Thus, gratitude is much stronger than appreciation in bringing us to unconditional happiness.
Our natural tendency is to look out for the negative things in life and ignore the positive things.
As human beings, perfectionism is hardwired into us, making us dwell on the things that are going wrong and trying to improve them without considering the things that are going right.
As a result, we find it tempting to become pessimistic and negative with our attitudes.
But, as we’ve said before, negative attitudes only get in the way of your ability to be happy.
If you want to find unconditional happiness, then you’ll have to start getting rid of negative attitudes and part of doing that is putting less worry and thought on the things that are going wrong in your life and putting more thought on the things that are going right.
Making the conscious effort to find positive things to say about your situation will correct the balance of positivity and negativity that naturally leads to negative thoughts when we become complacent.
Gratitude is not simply a matter of being thankful for what you have.
It’s also a matter of being thankful of the things you don’t have: be they sickness, some dangerous addiction, an annoying relative sharing the house with you, crippling debt, a medical complication, or a bomb scare.
All sorts of things could be going wrong. Even if you do have one or more of these things, chances are you probably don’t have all of them.
Acknowledge the bad things you don’t have and think about how much more peaceful your life is because you don’t have to worry about them. This also is gratitude.
Numerous studies all over journals and the internet have repeatedly shown that people who practice gratitude regularly have improved mental fitness and physical fitness as well.
They exercise regularly (1) and maintain much lower levels of stress.
Gratitude is closely mixed with good mental health, because good mental health improves your ability to focus, which in turn allows you to better remember to concentrate on the good in your life.
A mentality of gratitude cuts back on your stress. Stress feeds directly off of the object of worry.
Whenever you put worry into something, that worry builds on your stress. Whenever you choose to set worrying aside, your stress gets better, too.
Building up a lifestyle of gratitude develops your mental strength to set worrying aside and cut down on your stress level.
Being thankful for the good going on in your life reminds you that your whole world really isn’t crashing down. Which world you live in is wholly a matter of choice, namely, what you choose to pay attention to.
Everyone has two worlds: one is crashing down and ending all life as you know it while the other is calm, stable and peaceful. Which one you live in depends solely on your choice of attitude.
Living in a calm, stable and peaceful world will improve your physical, mental, spiritual and social health, while living in the one crashing down will bring your health down with it.
Gratitude also improves your creative power.
Focusing on the negative streamlines your mind to the logic of finding the biggest problem and trying to solve it. We are tempted to do this because it is easy.
Gratitude, on the other hand, requires a certain degree of creativity.
There is so much going on right around us that it vastly outnumbers the things going wrong. Beginning the act of gratitude can be challenging simply because of the sheer number of choices among the good in your life.
If you’re not careful, you might become insincere about it and it starts to seem a bit silly. “Sure, I guess I do like the fact that I’m alive and well but that’s such a common thing, how am I supposed to find it valuable?”
You see, the same applies to gratitude that applies to appreciation: however valuable something is depends wholly on you. Not on some arbitrary price assigned by the economy or on how common something appears to you.
You alone decide the value and the value you choose to set directly affects how thoroughly you enjoy that part of life.
If suffering is what it takes to appreciate, that is, to completely and thoroughly enjoy, then so be it. With a proper spirit of gratitude, you will find great value in the common things around us that go right.
A lot of adventure literature puts emphasis on the depriving of some common good that readers typically ignore in their life.
Frank Herbert’s science fiction novel Dune (2), for example, tells the story of a people living on a planet where water is so scarce it is more highly prized than gold!
These stories are excellent ways of reminding us just how valuable everyday commodities can be, especially when they are basic necessities such as water!
The more everyday commodities we learn to appreciate, the easier it will be to develop the mentality of gratitude.
Here’s a good start that applies to you regardless of who you are or what your circumstance is: be grateful for the fact that you can be happy.
No matter how terrible your situation is, no matter how much suffering is intruding on your life, none of that can take away your ability to become happy.
This is perhaps the most important good in your life, especially if you commit yourself to the lifestyle of unconditional happiness.
I want to thank you for taking the time to read my article about why gratitude is important in our life. I sincerely hope its contents have been a good help to you.