The difference between Gratitude and Positive Thinking.
the quality of being thankful; readiness to show appreciation for and to return kindness.
"she expressed her gratitude to the women in her Wellness Tribe"
This word is so much more than the quality of thankfulness (no offense, Webster). To me, gratitude is a space. It’s a feeling. Gratitude is the energy we surround ourselves in. It reminds us that what we have in our life is already wonderful, even if it’s not ideal. This topic speaks so loudly to my heart as it has been the “thing” that has transformed my life. I’ve been able to take all my heartaches, my failures and my undoing’s, and turn them into a space of gratitude simply because I trust that leaning into love, no matter what, can relieve a hurting heart. When I look back at all the things that I felt didn’t go right in my life (a layoff after 11 years of employment, a miscarriage, a death in the family…. all this year alone, I might add) I can easily see gratitude in-between the lines.
I am grateful that I was pushed out of a job that no longer served me. Drops of Gratitude would not be as big as it is now without that happening.
I am grateful that my body was wise enough to know that there was an anomaly in our pregnancy.
And I am grateful for every single moment I got to spend with my Grandmother even though she left us too soon.
To know that you can use love and gratitude in times when you feel life is not fair really makes dealing with the tough stuff smoother. Your heart will be softer; you can see the speck of light at the end of the tunnel because as you heal, you already know you are already surrounded in love. It’s not something that comes at the end of it all.
But, in order to use this as a tool in your ‘Dealing with the Sucky Stuff’ tool box you must understand something very important.
Gratitude and Positive Thinking can be very different things.
Positive thinking is what we do when we don’t want to actually deal with the “yuck”. It’s the mentality of “fake it until you make it”. This can be useful when needing to psyche yourself up or alter a crummy mood. But it doesn’t have the capacity to change the direction of your mind. There needs to a feeling involved for your brain to make the feel-good changes. This is what happens in your limbic system (the driver’s seat to your emotions) when you FEEL love. Essential Oils can also reach this sacred spot making them pivotal in aiding in our mood (which is why they are included in everything we make!). Positive thinking is also the thought of just pushing things aside and that hoping if you ignore it, those bad feelings will go away. They won’t.
Gratitude might be a practice that doesn’t come easily, especially in times of heart ache but I can tell you from experience that it is something that grows inside of you. The neurons that fire together every time you sit in a space of love and thankfulness will eventually wire together. I can literally bring myself to my knees when I think of how blessed I am even though life is unfair and I have my “yucky stuff”, too. I never let myself sit in a space of pity for too long because, honestly, the space of gratitude is just so much more enjoyable. I am grateful for every single moment in my life, the good the bad and the ugly because no matter what, I always see love and love is a really beautiful way to heal.
If you are in Calgary and want to learn more about Gratitude as a practice AND make your very own aromatherapy bracelet, join us on November 22nd. Click HERE for all the details.