Interrupt Anxiety With Gratitude
- Back to Work
- 08 Jul 2016
Every morning, as I open the doors of my balcony to welcome the morning breeze, I’m fortunate to witness the smiling faces of a number of underprivileged children in a school next door. The ease with which they throw their arms across each other’s shoulders, their chuckles of laughter when one plays a prank on another, their shrieks of excitement when listening to a cricket score on the radio… humble me.
There must be about 15 of them lodging together on that floor. It is roughly the same area that 3 of us in my nuclear family occupy, more often than not with a grouse about how we could do with more space! But, each time I get a glimpse of these content souls, all griping within me ceases and I’m reminded of how much I HAVE!
Did I mention that they are all blind?
Isn’t it true that most of the time we’re absolutely oblivious to all that we’ve been blessed with?
And by that, I don’t just refer to our palatial bungalows or holiday homes, multiple cars or bank accounts, lockers to store our jewelry or the like. I am trying to draw your attention to the sheer fundamentals in our every day, in our every moment… which are nothing short of blessings.
The fact that you are able to READ this… means that you have the gift of sight! The ability to see and soak in the beauty around you… a mélange of colors, a mishmash of shapes and sizes, diverse creations, and oh so much more!
The fact that YOUR BODY, which is a creation of such marvel, is carrying out all its functions no matter how basic or how complex, so magnificently on its own… without any of your interference! Whether it’s the batting of an eyelid, the heart pumping blood for supply to the entire body, the stomach and intestines partnering for digestion, or even the flu, which is only indicative of some imbalance in your system, which is also being fought against, from within!
How miraculous is that?
When, having so little those blind children next door could be as gleeful as they were, versus having so much, where I could still make room for dissatisfaction, it dawned on me that…
Gratitude is a quality of the heart, not the wallet!
As someone once aptly observed: ‘’It is not happy people who are grateful. It is grateful people who are happy!’’
No matter what our grievances are, we have and always will have several reasons to be thankful. The essence of the matter is that when we make gratitude a habit, it gradually becomes an attitude; and when that happens, gratitude becomes a memory of the heart! And, when you start wearing gratitude like a cloak, it will feed and nourish every corner of your life!
Then, no matter where and in what circumstance we are in, our being will always find that which IS and feel gratification for it!
Every so often, all my petty lamenting over all the things my son is doing wrong stops when I realize how blessed I am to HAVE a healthy child. If you’re in a job with a low pay package, a difficult boss, long hours of work, or a level below what you’d expect, take my word on this, you are way luckier than the millions of people out there without a job at all and desperate for one!
If you feel you’re still only job-hunting, let me tell you you’re way ahead of those who are still swamped under hurdles like lack of family support system or low self-esteem!
And all of this I say, not only so that we function in the right mindset, but because IT IS THE TRUTH.
Don’t you agree?
Here are a few things that always work for me:
1. Keeping the Little things Little: There is no doubt that having said all of the above, we do, and always will have matters to sort out. But a smooth method of doing that would be to only give the matter the space it deserves, inside your head.
Ask yourself this: ‘’How much will this matter in the next 5 minutes, a week, or a year, later?’’
Amazingly, you will see how so much drops away without you having spent much of your precious energy on it.
2. The 1 Whole Minute Exercise: Recalling your blessings when your head space is messed up is rather difficult. Sometimes, it backfires. Thus, I do this couple of times during the day when I’m in a good frame of mind so that it becomes a habit and eventually comes naturally to me.
Anytime during your day, try to spend 60 seconds alone, simply pondering all that you actually have. Whether it’s a wardrobe full of clothes, a fridge full of food that will last you the entire week, or a super comfy bed to sleep on… Gradually, instead of you having to find the time, that minute will find you; when you bump into someone a little less fortunate during your day, who will remind you of your exercise!
3. Go Visiting: Once a fortnight, see if you can make a stop, or if it suits you, offer help of any kind at an orphanage, old age home, or a government-run educational institution. We always have one or the other of these in our neighbourhood, so we don’t have to worry about time or distance. Take your children along, too. These visits go a long way in not just making us aware but them too, versus our constant efforts to try and show our children how much they have, or how hard we work to fulfill their needs!
And if you can’t make it every fortnight, then birthdays & anniversaries are perfect occasions to weave these visits in!
If you haven’t noticed yet, Gratitude has a partner it always brings along… Abundance.
I’d like to leave you with what Dr. Robert Holden beautifully revealed:
"The miracle of gratitude is that it shifts your perception to such an extent that it changes the world you see!"
Kaajal Ahuja is a commerce graduate, who worked in the field of Customer Support first at HDFC Bank, and then at Dell International. During her 11-year career break, she spent four years volunteering as a Teacher at a government-run educational institution and also ran her own enterprise – ‘’Hey Gorgeous’’ – alongside, for 8 years. It was during her break that she discovered her love for writing, and is now back to work as a part-time Content Writer at JobsForHer. She is married and is an upbeat mommy to an 11-year-old