- Challenges that we face. Many times we face obstacles; really, really hard obstacles and we wonder “what did I do to deserve this?” We may get angry or bitter and feel resentful that this has happened to us. I know I have been in this situation more than once in my lifetime. I was feeling sorry for myself one day not too long ago and I thought “Feeling sorry for myself isn’t working for me. What if I look at it differently? How could I be grateful for this challenge?” I have thought of other people that I have read about that have had it way harder than me and some of them are grateful for the atrocities that have happened to them because it made them more compassionate, sympathetic or better people. They actually embraced the roadblocks and were better people for it. I no longer call them my ‘’challenges” anymore but my “blessings” that will somehow make me a better, stronger person. Instead of feeling sorry for myself and wallowing in self pity I ask myself “how can this make me be a better person?”
- My past. I have often blamed an alcoholic Mother and a Father in denial on how my life turned out. I have convinced myself that if my Mom was not a drunk and showered her kids with love instead of ignoring them that my life would have turned out so much better. In some ways that may be true, but in others I would not be who I am today. Even as a little kid I always tried to help people. I would find the under dog in class and be kind to them when others weren’t. I tend to seek out and they find me the ones who need a bit of encouragement and support. I see me in them and want to reassure them that they are perfect the way they are and they are accepted. I have often been unhappy in my career because I feel it is not meaningful enough and I am not helping anyone. Had I not felt unaccepted, at times unwanted, and just invisible I am not sure I would or could “see” people for who they are underneath their shell.
- My imperfections. I hear quite a lot “You’re a coach. You should know better to act that way”. It used to make me feel badly that I should know better. What is wrong with me, I would think. Then some one and I believe it was my coach, who said, “You want to know what’s wrong with you? You are human and we are never perfect.” That really helped me look at my vices with curiosity instead of berating myself. I would think, “Well, that’s interesting that I acted that way. What made me do that?” Her words freed me up to be able to look at myself and accept every part of me; good and bad. It makes me, me! She was right, no one will ever be perfect and do and say all the right things all the time. That’s what makes us human and beautiful, individual people.
So there you have it. These are my 3 things to be grateful for that I have to dig deep and remember and keep reminding myself.
But don’t forget family, friends and health either because those are super important to be grateful for as well.
Please be sure to write what you are grateful for and submit to the following link:http://www.blogher.com/frame.php?url=http%3A%2F%2Fmsw.usc.edu%2Fmswusc-blog%2Fthe-gratitude-campaigncall-for-submissions%2F&_back=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.blogher.com%2Fwhat-are-you-thankful-year-join-gratitude-blog-carnival-nov-22-dec-3-0