This morning I taught a yoga class (my 51st), and the theme of my class was gratitude. I researched gratitude the day before and found many inspiring and relatable quotes about feeling grateful. If worrying and stressing were negatives, gratitude is the positive, the technicolour vibrant photo of what is right now.
One of the quotes that resonated with me was:
“Gratitude will shift you to a higher frequency, and you will attract much better things.” – Rhonda Byrne
Those who read my blog or have done in the past know I have had my struggles with depression and anxiety, secondary to obsessive compulsive disorder, so I am no stranger to feeling hopelessness and despair. I have seen and been at rock bottom. I have been so deeply mired in negativity and cynicism that positive quotes stung like having sandpaper rubbed on my fingertips. My point is I’m not an effusively chipper person and I wasn’t easily swayed to see life in a positive light.
However, being thankful for everything I have right now is a liberating and enriching experience. My life currently, on paper is far from perfect. I am facing many stresses at present: returning to medicine, impending divorce and a failed dysfunctional relationship. However, I feel alive, happy and grateful. There is nothing I would not attempt despite anxiety. I love teaching and practising yoga, the challenges I face remind me of my resilience and reinforce that I can be whatever I want.
I’m grateful for having people in my life who believe in me. As one quote I came across said:
“At times, our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.” – Albert Schweitzer
Everything that makes me comfortable and happy is in existence because of the people I’ve had around me, past and present. How can I not be grateful? Why would I not allow the overwhelming feeling of warm contentment propel me forward? It’s a lot better than finding fault with life. As another quote that resonated with me said, not being grateful in life is like being invited to a fabulous weekend away of abundance and indulgence and not thanking the host before you leave.
I’m grateful for pain too, as pain, or a feeling of unease, that won’t subside indicates that something isn’t right for me. I’m grateful to be able to sense this and speak out. Suffering in silence doesn’t sit right with me. I’m grateful for being able to give my energy, time and part of me to those I like and enjoy being around. However, I am also grateful I’m learning to draw lines and create boundaries that preserve my energy, efforts and time. No one is a bottomless source of those things.
With so many positive benefits of being grateful; the removal of powerlessness, the feeling of abundance in the present and the appreciation of all experiences that shape us into who we are, I could not recommend it enough.