My 2018 diary has a little section that makes me write one thing for which I am grateful every day. To be honest, I do not follow it religiously. It so happens that some days remain blank. Sometimes, when I have too many gaps in the week, I sit down at the end of the week, and, in an attempt of having a perfectly filled out gratitude week, I try recalling all the interesting and unusual things that have happened to me through the week.
But we all can agree that expecting to have a life where each day is filled with excitement and novelty is unrealistic, to say the least.
Most of the days are 9-5. Most of the days are wake up-work-cook-eat-sleep. It comes down to our ability to see the good and unusual in everyday mundane things. It is up to us to see the highlights in everyday life.
And if you are really stuck, why not be grateful for things that you do not have in your life? You may be happy because you do not have to worry about finding a job, or you do not have serious health issues. You may be grateful that you do not have big worries, and you do not have almost any limits of learning new skills.
I like the analogy of negative space. Looking at this painting, you are most likely to see the portrait first, even if it is more ‘colourless and boring’ than the colourful and exciting background.
How much happier would we be if we perceived life in a negative space, like this artwork? If we also noticed all the things that do not cause troubles and worries to us.
Sometimes it is not about what is present there. It is more about what is not there.
And this is why, now my gratitude weekly list is filled with things such as “I do not have to worry about cooking dinner tonight, because I have a warm soup”, “I got to come home early today”, “I got to talk to family on Skype”, “I didn’t get out of home and rested” and even “I wasn’t late for 9am uni class after the 6am Sydney to Melbourne flight”.