Have you ever been dissatisfied at anything? Perhaps with your salary, status in life, the material things you own, the people around you, or even the partner you have? I’m pretty sure we’ve all been discontented at some point in life. After all, in this age, media has been used to influence us to be dissatisfied with who we are and what we have.
The root of discontentment is the inability to appreciate the small things. When we don’t see the significance of little blessings, we tend to compare our situation with others, often resulting in envy and worse, hate. Some try to patch up their dissatisfaction by pretending to be in someone else’s shoes. Some opt to social climb. But having a standard of living you yourself can’t maintain makes your life more miserable than before. So, how can one develop a grateful character to avoid living miserably?
Remember that small things comprise the big stuff.
I mentioned this in the introduction. We should be thankful for the little things given to us. The air we breathe, the clean water, and the meals we partake are all examples. Your cellphone isn’t an iPhone? At least you have a cell. You only have two pairs of pants? Some can’t even afford to buy one. You don’t have brand new shoes? At least you have feet; some are born without them. You don’t have a huge school allowance? Well, at least you go to school! Some of us disregard the small things we have because of discontentment. We forget that ₽500.00 is comprised of 500 pieces of ₽1.00. No one appreciates the Piso unless that Piso becomes a member of a large group of pesos. Imagine having so many ₽1 in your life to be thankful for, but you just don’t realize that they’re worth ₽1,000,000 already! The secret is to be satisfied with the little blessings we already have because they compose the big ones.
Volunteer or observe others.
Most of us are ungrateful because we don’t see how blessed we are in our current status. When the ingratitude becomes too toxic for our emotional, spiritual, and mental health, volunteering and observing could help. I, for one, appreciated my situation when I was given a chance to observe children with special needs who were non-verbal. This means they rarely or don’t talk; therefore, they can’t express themselves through speech. Watching the kids struggle with communication was hard to take in since I took a bachelor’s degree in Mass Communication. Seeing them struggle with what they want to say and use only an application on a device to communicate struck my heart like lightning. I thought, “What about the non-verbal ones who don’t have access to that app? How do they communicate? How about those who can’t even afford to see an expert to assess their situation?” Observing the kids made me ponder about the nonsense complaints I have in my life. I use my mouth to whine, and yet these kids can’t even thank their parents and teachers. I guess what I’m trying to say is that volunteering and observing others can help us become grateful in life. We shouldn’t toot our own horn and announce to the world how better we are than them; we just have to be more appreciative of what was given to us.
Always look at the silver lining.
Every challenge has its own silver lining. To develop a thankful mind, you should focus on the lesson a trial can teach you rather than how it can break you. Every situation can improve our being if we allow it to. Depending on our response, a challenge can either break or make us. It’s better for you to look at it with the perspective that it’ll make you a better person. Being grateful for obstacles is difficult, which is why it requires practice. But practice makes permanent. So continue thanking God for your trials, and you’ll find yourself more grateful in life.
Inspire people that will inspire you.
Lastly, spread good vibes to those around you by becoming more appreciative of who they are and what they do. Let the thankful speech start with you if no one else is doing it. Not only will you be able to instigate good conversation; you’ll also empower them. Focusing on the good things will make others merry and even inspire them to do the same. And what better way to develop a grateful attitude than surround yourself with grateful people, right?
Gratitude has the superpower to color a dull moment. It can block the negative emotions and turn them into positive energy. As you develop a thankful character, you’ll slowly realize that you’re more contented. And when you’re contented, your life becomes better.