How to be Thankful How to Be Thankful ©2012, Diligence Eke www.toplifehill.com How to be Thankful Dedicated to all those who want to say ‘thank you’ How to be Thankful This is a free e-book that you may give to friends and loved ones you think might benefit from it as long as you do not alter the contents in any way. If you have questions or comments you can contact me at: email@example.com How to be Thankful Being thankful simply means feeling or expressing gratitude. But it’s easier said than done, trust me. When events in life get into a routine it becomes very easy to discount the good things in your life and focus on those little, pesky things that make your life seem like it’s not good enough. Imagine having to wake up very early every morning and driving to your office and always getting caught up in a traffic jam. At first you don’t mind until you get used to it, and then the trouble starts. This same thing also happens in relationships where it’s all smiles and kisses, hugs and laughs; but just wait until it becomes a routine and almost nothing is worthy of thanks. From your annoying child to your always-too-serious husband, from petulant grandma to your regular dish washing, everything seems to annoy you. But wait a minute, is life supposed to be this too serious, nothing to be happy for, and cold? I don’t think so! Amidst all these things how then can you be thankful? Well, to start with, I’d like to say that you don’t have to be extremely happy to be thankful. You don’t have to be the president of your country in order to be thankful. In fact, your life doesn’t have to be perfect for you to show gratitude to God. The first thing you have to do is to appreciate the fact that you are alive. Life is a gift, remember? Then appreciate every good thing that has ever happened to you. Yes some bad things have happened, you couldn’t change that, but some good things have happened, too. You always saw the bad just because you chose to. Start counting your blessings, naming them one by one. It’ll do you a lot of good to write down in a book all the good things that have come your way this year. This is called a gratitude journal: from big things like the double promotion you got at the office, to small things like that affectionate hug you got from an old-time friend. Try it out and you’ll find out that your list might be endless. It might be just true that you have been looking at your life through problem-tinted glasses. Change your glasses! Do not compare; live in the moment! It’s often said that yesterday is history, tomorrow is a mystery, but today is a gift. So, enjoy it. This is a very big advice I usually give to people. Always remembering the past and placing it side by side with the present will lead to painful comparisons. Also, always thinking about the future and placing it side by side with the present will cause you plenty of worry and anxiety. And when this happens you naturally will not have anything to be thankful for. You’ll always remember good old days and ‘bad todays’, and therefore see nothing to be thankful for. Live in the moment. Enjoy the good. Be happy for yourself. Be thankful for the laugh you just shared with a friend or your spouse. Be thankful for the affection someone just showed you. Be thankful for your healthy family. Just be grateful to God because some people lack those very things you think to be too small. Look around you and see the wonderful work of nature. The beautiful roses and their smell, the lush green grass around you, your nice garden or poultry, the golden sun you see when you look out your window in the morning, the beautiful oceans and mountains…. Let these creations of nature appeal to you. Appreciate them and be thankful for them. Just for a second, think of how useful these things are to your daily life: the water you drink which comes from the ocean, the meat you eat which comes from animals, your dry clothes which are as a result of the sun’s heat. You just can’t but be grateful to God for all these things. One of these days when you have the time try walking down to the nearest hospital in your area and you’ll instantly learn how to be thankful. When I did one of my clinical postings in the Radiotherapy How to be Thankful section of the hospital I was posted to, I saw cases that I didn’t have to wait to be show gratitude to God. Even if you are in a hospital right now as a patient and you’re reading this feeling like you don’t have anything to be grateful for, I understand. But I doubt you’ve visited a morgue to see what it looks like! Well, don’t worry you don’t have to. All am saying is that in any situation in life you can always find something to be thankful for. Sincerely speaking, there are times when I don’t feel like I want to be thankful. And I guess it’s the same for you. This is because life always has ups and downs, but we can always make the best out of it. I culled the following words in the next paragraph from an unknown author quoted in www.inspiringthots.net: Be thankful that you don’t already have everything you desire. If you did, what will there be to look forward to. Be thankful that you don’t know something, for it gives you the opportunity to learn. Be thankful for the difficult times. During those times you grow. Be thankful for your limitations, for they give you opportunities for improvement. Be thankful for each new challenge, because it will build your strength and character. Be thankful for your mistakes. They will teach you valuable lessons. Be thankful when you are tired and weary, because it means you’ve made the effort. Be thankful for setbacks. It’s easy to be thankful for good things, but a life of rich fulfillment comes to those who are also thankful for the setbacks. Be thankful for troubles, because gratitude can turn a negative into a positive. Find a way to be thankful for your troubles, and they can become your blessings. Studies have shown that those who are readily grateful lead healthier lives. They actually attract more good to their lives. And this is a natural principle. Thankfulness can be induced by happiness, or vice versa. In any case, however, stress and anxiety are reduced, releasing good hormones into the body which will make you stronger and better. There is every reason to be thankful today!