Monday, 6 June 2011

Gratitude = Happiness

I was thinking about this the other day….. I am grateful for my life.

I have several friends who seem to have exciting, action-packed, dramatic lives and sometimes I envy them. Even though I sometimes think my life is boring and mundane, I have to count myself lucky for the things that I DO have. I would much rather a life without drama, with the things that make me happy. I think of myself as an optimist but like all people I have my ups and my downs. But overall I’m happy with my lot in life. Awhile ago there was a television show called Making Australia Happy. It followed several Australians who were on a journey to increase there happiness. I found it interesting because it made me reflect upon my own life and my level of happiness.

The show touched on three ways of making people happy; positive psychology, mindfulness and physical activity. An exercise the participants in the show had to do with positive psychology was to write a gratitude letter to someone who had been a positive influence in their life but they hadn’t thanked properly. I thought about this, but in a different way. I’m grateful for the people in my life and the way my life has panned out. This doesn’t mean that I don’t look at others with envy, but as they say the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence. So in a way I guess this is my way of writing a gratitude letter… posting about what I’m grateful for… the green on my side of the fence.

I’m grateful for my family. I live with my younger sister and my parents live overseas. I like living with my sister, I like chatting with her (when we can catch each other between work, hanging with bf’s and working on creative projects) about what she’s up to. We don’t have these chats too often, but I think that’s what makes them great. I talk to mum about once a week on the phone and sometimes have a quick talk with dad. We’re not the tightest knit family in the world, but we are very supportive of each other and that works for me. I like my independence and I think I would feel suffocated if I constantly saw my family all the time.

I’m grateful for my childhood, I spent my pre-teen years growing up in Vanuatu and I cherish the fact that I was able to have a pretty free and easy childhood. It makes me sad to think of how quickly some of my friends grew up and for that matter kids these days barely have a childhood. Peer pressure and consumerism, among other things, affect children so young nowadays.

My partner is pretty damn great, he makes me laugh and he’s supportive. So, I’m definitely grateful for him. We treat each other as equals and I love that about our relationship. We have similar goals and thoughts and yet have completely different tastes and ideas about some things. I think it’s our great combination of similarity and difference that make us gel so well, we push each other’s limits and that keeps everything interesting.

Friends are very important to me, I love how diverse and different my friends are. I’m grateful that I’m able to hang out with such fantastic people and enjoy their company. I love the open and free conversations we have about everything (I mean EVERYTHING!). I enjoy hearing the stories my friends have to tell and I really like seeing how creative my friends are.

This may sound like I’m up myself, but I’m pretty grateful for me. I think that as women we are the first to find flaws in ourselves. So, I think that sometimes we need to turn our thinking around and find things in ourselves that we are happy about. So here are mine. I find that I’m able to get along with a wide variety of people from different backgrounds and personalities. I love to make people laugh and I’m not afraid of making a fool of myself (especially for a laugh!). I’m an open and honest person, sometimes this gets me into trouble but I’d definitely rather be genuine than faking it. I’m often complemented about my skin, so I’m grateful for that. I’m grateful that I am the person I am and I am grateful for the events and factors that have made me who I am.
So these are some of the things that I’m grateful for.

What are five things you are grateful for? What are five things you like about yourself?
Let me know by leaving a comment below.

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