I’m not going to sit here and pretend like life doesn’t get hard. Or that we can let go of the traumas and let-downs we experience overnight. I think the messages around healing are sometimes miscommunicated or misunderstood because of all the flowery language and images people use when talking about the subject. That flowery language includes words like ‘gratitude’ and I’m here to reintroduce this topic in a more realistic way we can all relate to.
WHAT IS IT? WHY IS IT IMPORTANT?
Gratitude: the act of feeling and communicating appreciation for the people, circumstances and material possessions in our lives. It allows us to cherish our present in ways that make us feel in abundance rather than deprived.
Simply put, negativity breeds negativity and positivity breeds positivity. To put it more simply, you attract into your life what you speak; so if you speak appreciation for what you already have, you are allowing the universe, or God, or Source, or Allah, or Yahweh, to give you more experiences, people and circumstances to be grateful for. On the other hand, if you are speaking hate or disdain or general dissatisfaction over your life, you are allowing more unhappiness and dissatisfaction into your life.
HOW TO PRACTICE: SAY “THANK YOU”
Saying thank you is one of the easiest and quickest ways to express gratitude. If you’re reading this right now, that means you at least have access to the internet. Say, ‘Thank you.’ This can be to your parents/guardians if you don’t believe in a higher power or yourself! Give yourself some love and let yourself know that you are appreciated. For those of you who do believe, when you wake up in the morning before your feet hit the floor say, “God/Universe thank you for waking me up today.”
Here’s a list of possible (everything may not apply to everyone) people, circumstances and experiences to say ‘thank you’ for:
Thank you for waking me up today.
Thank you for waking my family up today.
Thank you for my health.
Thank you for my family’s health.
Thank you for allowing me to see, walk, talk, taste, smell, hear and feel.
Thank you for my education.
Thank you for my materials.
Thank you for my food.
Thank you for my beautiful body.
Thank you for my beautiful face.
Thank you for my significant other(s).
Thank you for my mom/dad/relative that has shown me love.
Thank you for providing me and my family somewhere to rest our heads.
Thank you for my access to health services.
Thank you for allowing me to have a good day.
Thank you for allowing me and my family to be safe.
Thank you for my clothes.
Thank you for making me a Black Woman.
Like I mentioned earlier, life is not easy. And expressing gratitude isn’t about pretending life is easy. Gratitude is about acknowledging your appreciation for what your life is and what it has taught you, no matter if you see it as ‘good’ or ‘bad’.
There are always two sides to everything, and making gratitude a part of your life is one of the first steps you can take to living a whole, peaceful life. This is because gratitude doesn't repress or ignore the hardships in life, but acknowledges them for the lessons they bring. We'll talk more about what happens when we ignore our pain and traumas when we get to shadow work. Until then:
Love and Light,