Typically if you don’t sleep well one night, it doesn’t hit you until the day after. When it does hit, you feel it in your whole body. You experience how tired you are in every inch of yourself. When we’re awake and everything’s fine, our awareness of our bodies usually is zero or around that. It’s only when we’ve put our body through some level of stress that we are aware of it. It’s similar to how losing something makes us finally realize how grateful we were for it.
Telling someone to “Be thankful” seems to belong around some holiday table, or come from an angry parental figure. At different times, we may see the little positivity posts with the fancy script that talks about being grateful, but what’s the point? It’s easy to blow off the advice because it seems like something only yogi vegans genuinely aspire to. Being grateful however, is a habit. It’s a habit that improves your life, no matter what kind of person you are.
So how does one “become” a grateful person? How do you magically become peaceful minded from it?
There’s likely no one correct way to be thankful for what you have, but the key is to actually be thankful, and that can be difficult to achieve. Especially if it’s a new thing to you, make being thankful a task. Don’t just say you’re grateful. Write a long letter expressing how much you appreciate someone in your life. Go out of your way to buy a cup of coffee for someone you know needs it. Be nice to your cashiers, even when they have an attitude. All of this things may not seem like activities we associate with gratitude. However, if we are thankful, by definition we need to thank them. It can be through a gift, extra patience, time spent with them, or whatever you know they’d appreciate themselves. Yet, try to not take the easy route out and just say it. Words mean nothing if they aren’t backed up by action.