Mindfulness and Gratitude
Today I want to talk about the concept of mindfulness and gratitude. The more i learn and practice both I realize that they both go hand in hand. You can’t have mindfulness without gratitude and vice versa. When you are mindful, you are aware of your experience and your state of mind. When you are grateful you are aware of what you have rather than what you don’t have. Therefore, a grateful person is a mindful person.
I just want to acknowledge that 2016 is about to pass. Why does it feel like it’s flying by? Is it because time is actually moving faster? Or are we too caught up in our own busyness to see it?
We live in a society that promote speed, materialism, consumerism. We are constantly told that we are not enough and we have to fill the emptiness inside with more stuffs. We are tricked into being busy just for the sake of being busy. It’s your life. It’s the only thing that you have. Don’t live by the society’s agenda, don’t live by anyone else’s agenda but yours.
When we are “mindless” and just going through the motion we let life happen to us. It’s easy to get caught up in the cog-wheel and take things for granted.
What things do we take for granted?
For Example, Safety. For most of us, we don’t have to live in a constant state of fear and worry about our own lives everyday. There are millions of people in this world that in 2016 still living in the war zone and getting shot at or bombed everyday. Can you possibly imagine the stress and the terror that those brothers and sisters are going through? My heart goes out to those people, especially seeing what’s going in in Syria right now should make you deeply, I mean deeply appreciate what you have right now. How awesome is that to not have to fear for our lives everyday.
Sometimes we take life for granted, I am guilty of this as well. We assume that there will be tomorrow. We assume there will be the next paycheck. We assume that there will be next year.
Being mindful helps us come back to the present.Mindfulness help us train the brain to see the aliveness of the moment. Here and now.
Once you savor the experience, you realize that life is something precious and special. You see the world for what it is, without judgement and reactions. You are able to experience life fully. You are able to be present to your body. To the person in front of you and to the activity you are engaging in.
At that point, we can’t help but be grateful. Gratitude is not an effort at that point. Gratitude is a product of being present and realize the importance of this experience.
The more you are grateful and easier it is to be mindful. We are creating a positive snowball in our perspective.
When I look at back in 2016 I acknowledged and am grateful for both the ups and the downs. A highlight of the year would be a severe ankle injury that I initially thought was a disaster. It hurt me physically, emotionally, and financially. But turned out that it allowed me to visit my grandfather before his passing. I got to speak at his funeral and connect with many family members. I then started a podcast because I could not be active due to my injury. I learned so much through the process. I had a chance to connect with amazing guests and listeners from around the world.
The ankle injury was a blessing in disguise. I wouldn’t trade those experience for anything else. Those are the things that come up. I'm just sharing this as an example.
Now take a moment to review your year, what happened? How did those event shape you? Pause for a moment and see what comes up. Can you see that there is blessing within every curse? Find out for yourself.
I encourage you to end the year by acknowledging people for something awesome that they’ve done. Acknowledge them for who they are.
Acknowledge and be grateful for yourself and your actions and all the good things that you have done. Acknowledge all the perceived mistakes and bad fortunes.
Because challenges are lessons in disguise. Be grateful that you have the opportunity to grow.
Be grateful for 2017, as a new year marks a new beginning. All the dreams that you’ve put on hold, now it’s the time to unleash. The new year’s resolution is a great mark to start 2017 strong.
Be grateful that you give yourself another jab at this thing called life.
Be grateful for the people around you.
Be mindful of the unrest and ongoing war and grateful for peace in your life.
Be grateful for the day, be grateful that you get to wake up in the morning.
Be grateful for the air you breathe. Be grateful for the respiratory system that oxygenate your blood.
Be grateful for your current state of health and your ability to do something about it.
Be grateful for your life challenges. Be grateful for life itself. There are hundreds of millions if not billion other people who would give anything to have your life. Are you making the most out of it? Are you at least being grateful for the hands that you are dealt?
Challenges are lessons in disguise. You can’t control what life throws at you but you certainly can make what you want out of it. The gratitude exercise challenges you to extract "the good” from “the bad” and train your brain to see the situation in way that will benefit you the most.