Originally Written June 4, 2014
It’s only Wednesday and this week has been hell. I hate to say it but I’ve been on a bad mood streak. Not a “Woe is me / I hate the world” bad mood, but a “Life is trying so hard to humble me” kind of bad mood. It takes more than the usual efforts to lift my mood, and twice as much time meditating to quiet the thoughts racing in my overactive mind. But I get it done. It has made me reflect on how far I have come with dealing with certain situations. Last year I wrote a post entitled “Shit Happens”… after dealing with a month of stupidness. That ‘stupidness’ isn’t even half of what I currently have on my plate but I don’t feel nearly as bad as I did then. I love being able to read old conversations, emails and blog posts. It’s sometimes the only way I can see my own progress.
While acknowledging my progress, I remembered something that stuck out to me while Angelo’s mother was speaking at his memorial service. She reminded us that we should always be thankful, that if we take anything from this, that we should take a leaf out of her son’s book and learn to be thankful.
I’ve always been told to be grateful for what I have, and up until last year I thought I was. Someone explained to me that they always try to be thankful for every situation, even the bad, for it’s an experience to learn from. I didn’t believe them, their actions did not correlate with their explanation, and don’t even moreso now, but the words did stick with me.
This year, I began creating daily gratitude lists, I’m sure you guys have seen them on my instagram & facebook, but I am the queen of post its, my room is covered in them. I started this trend way before “Being Mary-Jane” did. Everyday, whenever I get the chance I create my list, take a picture and stick it away. I will admit it took some time getting used to. Somedays it was a struggle and I even had to create an alarm to remind me to complete my list. But it works. The act alone of finding something to be thankful about makes each day a little better; it’s proof I have something to smile about. Not only that, it helped foster the new habit of being able to see something negative in a positive light.
I am a firm believer that unless you’re happy and content with your now, you will never be able to be happy with your future and all the successes to come. You’ll constantly be on the hunt for something to appease you, something your friend has, and so on. It’s why when people associate happiness with other people or objects they only feel satisfied temporarily before pining for something else. Learning to be thankful with what you have now will help you appreciate all that is to come, and be grateful for it.
[ sidenote: you can be content with your now without being complacent. You can be happy with your now and still strive for improvement. Just throwing that out there]