As we’ve all experienced in the last 16 months, times have been difficult. Fear. Illness. Loss. Grief. We’ve been through so many stages. Through it all, I’ve been trying hard to keep cultivating gratitude.
Gratitude has been my absolute go-to in the darkest times of my life. It has helped me claw my way out of darkness into light. It has helped me look back on difficult times with a new understanding of how they fit into the story of my life and the life lessons I’m meant to learn.
It follows then, that cultivating gratitude has become even more important for me during the Pandemic.
Cultivating Gratitude During The Pandemic
What does gratitude mean to me during these times?
#1 The Harvard Medical Schools defines gratitude as an “appreciation of things that are valuable or meaningful to you”. Never have I been more grateful for life, for my husband, for health and all the comforts and security I enjoy.
#2 A study published in Psychological Science found when people focused on being grateful, they were more able to practise patience. While I still have a long way to go, I do see myself becoming more patient and accepting. It was difficult to wait patiently for the second dose of the vaccine as the Government seemed to keep extending the prescribed gap between doses. But I decided to focus on staying safe rather than worrying about this. I got my second dose exactly on the (new) date it was due!
#3 Gratitude is about appreciating life and whatever it brings. I’ve been learning to appreciate all the lessons these times have been teaching me.
#4 Gratitude is practised daily in the mundane moments of life. I’ve been enjoying the quiet. The lack of pressure to engage socially. Connecting with people I want to. Reconnecting with long lost friends and acquaintances. Cooking more. Cleaning more. Taking up more causes. And investing in learning.
“Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.”– Ralph Waldo Emerson
Do you have a gratitude practice? How has it been going during the Pandemic?