Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough. – Oprah
What does that mean?
This is another Twitter-friendly shortened quote. The more complete quote is “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.”
This is a quote that deals with on what we focus, and how that impacts how we perceive the world. That perception, in turn, helps to determine our attitude towards life in general.
Specifically, if you are grateful for what you have, your focus is gratitude, and you will more easily see other ways to be grateful, and you will find more opportunities to express your gratitude. You may not get a lot more ‘stuff,’ but you will most certainly appreciate it more, and enjoy your life.
On the other hand, if you are not so grateful, if you are always complaining (even if only in your head) about how others have it better, and you have it so bad, no amount of ‘stuff’ will ever satisfy you. That is because you will always be able to find someone with more, and the complaining will resume.
Why is gratefulness important?
Being grateful is a fundamental life-skill that many people don’t learn. It really is a useful skill to have, as it is a happiness-multiplier, for lack of a better term. Any happiness you have, if you have gratitude in your heart, will become much greater. It sounds silly, but it is true.
On the flip side, as the quote suggests, those without gratitude will find their happiness diminished. Jealousy, and all the other the related feelings, will suck the joy out of what you have and leave nothing but bitter feelings behind. I’ve been there, and it’s no fun. Have you?
With gratitude, even the smallest things in life become a joy to behold and to experience. Without gratitude, life is one long bummer. Most of us live somewhere between these extremes, but I hope you will join me in trying to live a life focused more on gratitude than not.
Where can I apply this in my life?
Even if you’re having trouble with feeling or expressing gratitude in the big things of life, you can start with the little things. Do you have food? Do you have shelter? Can you show or feel gratitude for even the little things in your life? That’s a step in the right direction!
Can you remember a time when you were really focused on what you didn’t have? Perhaps at a party as a child, and someone else got a gift. But not just any gift, they got the gift you had been wanting for some time, but not yet received.
Were you able to feel happiness and joy for them to have received such an excellent present, or was it too hard for you? Were you jealous instead? Were you a little angry, perhaps, at cruel fate? How was it that *they* got the thing you so wanted, but you had nothing?
It’s easy to react that way. I have done so many times before, and it wasn’t just limited to my grade school years. In college, a friend of mine and I both had a crush on the same girl, but he moved first, and I was left standing there with nothing.
For the longest time, I was hurt and bitter. However, they eventually married and had a family. Eventually realized that while I could regret not having asked her sooner, all worked out for the best, and I could be happy for them. Slowly, with time, gratitude came to me, as it will to you.
In what parts of your life do you still have trouble showing gratitude? Does someone you know have more stuff than you? Does someone have a better (and how do you define that?) group of friends? Better house? Better car? Better lifestyle? Better physical condition (health, fitness or…)?
I hope you realize that they can have nice things, and you can be happy for them, right? That is the high road, the better path for you to take. And it is healthier for you personally, both physically and mentally. Yes, it’s not always our first response, but that is a habit, and like all habits, it can be changed with effort.
The only question is are you willing to put forth the effort? How happy are you with the habits of bitterness and jealousy? How much do you desire change, to distance yourself from those negative feelings and move towards the happiness and fulfillment of gratitude?
When you are ready, just start on the little things. Take a moment before each meal, no matter how meager or bland, and be glad for what you do have, and be glad that you are not without. That is the way I started being more grateful, and I imagine it will work for you as well.
The other half is to break the habit of bitterness and jealousy. Any time you detect those feelings starting to well up within you, remind yourself that it is not appropriate to have those feelings. Then it’s just a matter of following through with the gratitude for the things you do have, and repeating until it is your default action.
We can all find reasons to be grateful for what we have, for there will always be those with less. We can also find reasons to be jealous, for there will always be those with more. The question is which of these help you feel better about life and about yourself?
Where do you want to live, where do you want to spend the rest of your life? In the house of gratitude, or the shack of jealousy? The choice is yours. Choose wisely.
From: Twitter, @_inspirational_
confirmed at : http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/quotes/o/oprahwinfr163087.html
Photo by nist6ss