Today's BLOG is a truthful self confession.
NOOOOOOOOO, I am NOT GRATEFUL all the time.
There I said it!!!
This past week, I had someone say to me,
"Wow Mrs. Grateful, I thought you never got upset!".....
WELL, the truth is YES I DO. Having a daily practice of GRATITUDE does not make me perfect any more than a daily practice of prayer leaves a life trouble free. A coach's kid can still drop the winning pass in the end zone, or strike out with bases loaded. The preacher's kid can still struggle with the same anxieties and peer pressures other teens face, a doctor's kid still gets sick, and the teacher's kid is not always the smartest student in the classroom.
The TRUTH is... NO ONE IS PERFECT!
We all have great moments and we all have moments when
we feel...less than perfect.....
BECAUSE WE ARE HUMAN!
So.... for all of the people out there who tell me,
" I just can't be grateful all the time.",
or "I'm not like you.... I still get mad sometimes.",
or "I'm just not feeling very grateful today."
Please know that's ok!
I'm not grateful every minute of the day either.
I still feel sad when people I love are hurting.
I still get mad sometimes too... and YES, there are people in the world that I truly just DO NOT LIKE and I choose to remove myself from their presence in order to keep my emotions where I WANT THEM to be.
BUT... that's ok.
And... yes, there are some days
when I don't feel that grateful either.
I still get my feelings hurt,
and sometimes people are rude to me
and yes, it does still sting a little. AND ...
NO, I'm not instantly grateful in the midst of heartache......
BUT I do recognize it quicker, and know that in order to change these negative feelings my brain is looping through, IT IS UP TO ME TO ALTER what I am thinking about!
Just this week alone, I've had:
1. Someone I care about disappoint me emensly.
2. Want something that I've really prayed for, and it just didn't work out.
3. Not been able to do something correctly even though I tried my very best.
4. Been extremely sad over my inability to FIX another's problems.
5. Miss a friend I rarely get to see anymore.
6. Been turned down for something I KNOW I would be great at.
And... yes, in the instant I was faced with these setbacks, it hurt.
A daily practice of GRATITUDE is not about burying your head in the sand and PRETENDING nothing bad ever happens. It is about realizing in the midst of the struggle, you have an opportunity to take a second look at what you consider to be the problem. Ask your self ..... is this "fixable" and use your brain to start thinking of solutions rather than telling every single person you know about the PROBLEM.
(This only makes the brain loop of that problem deeper and more profound)
Because..... truthfully, we ALL have problems and setbacks, and if you learn to change your focus to The THINGS you HAVE rather than The THINGS you think you've LOST.... your life will drastically change.
Yesterday, my heart was heavy and my eyes were filled with tears as my beautiful, precious daughter drove from Dallas to go with me to the vet to put the world's greatest dog to sleep. My children have loved this big old dog like a family member. Brook got him from the pound
with her Christmas money back in 2005
and he has loved us through the hardest moments of our life.
"Bear" rode in the back seat of my old GrandAm
back and forth to Snyder....
(at least a million times) to watch Brent play baseball...
taking up the entire backseat,
with his head out one window
and his tail out the other.
He is the very essence of man's best friend.
All he ever wants is a pat on the head, a rub behind the ears and an occasional treat. But.... he's really old now (especially for a big dog), and I can't fix him.
His back legs are crippled and I have to help pick
his 130lb frame up by the tail
every time he goes outside.
He sleeps about 23 out of 24 hours each day
and has started to whimper
while he lays at my feet in the kitchen.
And NO... I'm NOT grateful for any of this!!!!!
Brooklyn and I were prepared to say goodby.... we tried hard to think about all the precious memories we've had with this incredible dog, but tears rolled down our cheeks. As the vet examined him, he said, "Yes, he is hurting and NO, I don't have anything that will heal his crippled old legs. His body is big and heavy and his legs just aren't strong enough to hold him the way they used to. BUT..... I can see he still loves you guys and still enjoys being in your presence, and at this point I would say that even though he is hurting, his quality of life outweighs his pain level. AND... I do have some medicine that can alleviate some of that for you." That's all we needed!!! So, we got ourselves some new medicine, the biggest chew bone we could find, and 2 little short girls worked our butts off to get this old fella loaded back in the car and we headed HOME!
SO... this old dog came home to a mani/pedi spa treatment to celebrate the magical moments we STILL have together.
PS... I will NOT be going into the dog grooming business any time some! He looks like your grandma cut your hair while your mom was out of town. haha oops..... but hey, he's gotta be a little cooler.
AND.... this is NOT the real "BEAR".... this is the hair I cut off of him to make a fake "wig" Bear.... sometimes the creative in me pops out at the most awkward times!
Yes... I know our time with "BEAR" is limited. AND... No, I am NOT grateful for that. BUT.... I do know that my brain energy FLOWS where my attention GOES, and I am going to cherish the moments I have left. From all my research I can tell you the greatest lesson I have learned is when we focus our attention on what we DO NOT HAVE rather than what WE HAVE BEEN GIVEN, our life follows that same direction. So, No.... I'm NOT always grateful instantly, but boy do I work hard to change my thinking quickly. We can all sit and dwell on the people who don't like us, or the one's who won't change, or the car we can't afford, or the opportunity we didn't get....
OR we can focus on the people who love us instead of those who don't, the changes WE CAN MAKE for our own lives rather than all the OTHERs who won't do what we want. We can focus on the fact we do have a car to drive and are not WALKING in this summer heat rather than dwelling on the one that isn't yet within our budget, and we can believe that the opportunity we THOUGHT was ours, yet was given to someone else, is merely a small step compared to the one that's coming our way!
Where your focus goes..... your energy FLOWs.
Staci is a one-of-a-kind mix of JOY and Neuroscience who is teaching people all over the world to BUILD a BETTER BRAIN by using Gratitude to create a BRIGHTER future. She has a Master's Degree in Educational NEUROSCIENCE and 25 years of teaching experience where she developed a reputation for being able to uncover potential in others like no one else could. Let her teach you how to live a HAPPIER Life by using the neuroscience of GRATITUDE to rewire your brain and build a better future!