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Unlocking Gratitude When You Aren’t Feeling Grateful

As Thanksgiving approaches many of us feel pressured to constantly be thankful or obligated to publicly count our blessings via social media gratitude challenges. But life happens, things don’t turn out as we expected, and we bite back the urge to whack the next person who ask us what we are grateful for. The example might be a bit extreme but some of us are not great at being grateful. And that’s OKAY.

With all the excitement around the holiday season and end of the year, many of us get caught up in the stress the season can bring. If you are not feeling particularly grateful, then instead take a moment to really feel the feeling you are experiencing. If you are sad, angry, overwhelmed, or whatever feeling is surfacing, allow yourself to really get the message of that feeling. Bring it out. Ask yourself, why this specific emotion?  Listen to the answer. Every emotion has some purpose. Finding the purpose can open the door to new insights. So, experience that negative, awful feeling. Embrace it. Examine it. Learn from it. Then release it.

I believe feeling emotions is how we stay present in our day-to-day lives. Many of us have our calendars booked so far in advance that we don’t stop to think about the present moment. We live either in the past story or create a story about the future that has not arrived yet.  

The key to gratitude is noticing and accepting what is. Accept when you feel embarrassed, hurt, lonely, or whatever it may be.  Get the message, act and move on. Put the situation in perspective, look around the present. What do you see? What can you appreciate that you have in this moment? Even if it is being grateful for the fact that you felt that negative emotion, that’s one more step closer to unlocking an attitude of gratitude.

Grow, Give, Love, Live,

The Mother & the Daughter


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