I was 17 when I went to learn Reiki level 1 and I remember my very beautiful and gentle teacher saying to us - "one of the principles of Reiki is - just for today I will be grateful for everything." I wondered what everything meant, because at the time I had learn how to be a victim and how to feel sorry for myself for all the things that were wrong in my life. I found this concept of gratitude fascinating and decided to take it on board and see how it goes. A few days after this class I was in a blue line bus on a hot day on the way back from a multimedia class that I had signed up for but was not too keen on. So I was feeling hot and hungry and thirsty and irritated with the situation. I was blaming my parents and myself but most of all God for this state I was in when suddenly I remembered the words - just for today I will be grateful for everything!
Being grateful is easy - the first step is to take a minute or two out for gratitude in your day. Make a small gratitude list or sing a gratitude song of your own composition or express gratitude to someone in your life today even if it the staff that supports you at home and in the office. As you begin to experience the higher vibrations of gratitude it becomes easier and easier to remember and find time for it and soon it will become as natural to you as brushing your hair ;)
It was like a veil dropped from my eyes and I looked around the bus and saw how much I had to be grateful for. I looked outside at the people on the roads and was once again gripped by the astonishment of how much I should be feeling grateful for. I looked around at the cars and the people who were supposedly in comfort as compared to me but saw that their faces did not show any comfort - some of them looked as surly as I was a few moments ago. My mood lifted almost instantly and I started thinking about this phenomenon. I realised that as many people as there are whom I perceive as more fortunate than me, there are as many or even more who are less so physically, mentally, emotionally, materially, spiritually. The choice on what I want to look at is completely dependent on me.
In the 17 years since then there have been many times when I go back to feeling like the victim and being in trauma and drama of blame but every time all I need to do is remember to be grateful and it shifts. Slowly as one keeps practicing gratitude and reaching out for gratitude, one finds more and more reasons to feel grateful. There was a point of time when I would write 150 reasons for feeling grateful every day - I did this for a month. In the beginning it was challenging to find so many reasons but as the days passed I was amazed at all the little things I could find to be grateful for!
From having running water to electricity to roads and walls and adequate sanitary facilities. From being able to walk and move to having all my limbs intact to the fact that my brain functioned normally. From having a place to stay and friends to speak with and family that gave me the space I needed. From having a job to being able to educate myself and find time for the healing work I am interested in and on and on. Even in the worst case scenarios there is always a reason to feel grateful as long as I am willing to look for it and acknowledge it.
Sometimes it doesn't work and however much I try being grateful, it is difficult to get out of the blues but I keep at it because I know how wonderful the energy of gratitude feels. I know how effortlessly I smile and go through my day when I feel grateful and I am willing to do all I can to be in that space. Over the years gratitude has become more of a habit than feeling sorry for myself and therefore I have more and more around me that makes me feel grateful! And I am grateful for that :)
It is important to be inspired and have dreams and ambitions which at times requires one to study or learn from those who are already where we want to be. So while allowing for these aspirations and goals it is equally important to be aware of the fact that the life you lead in this present moment is an aspiration for someone else in the world. Just the fact that you are able to read these words makes you someone who is more privileged than many others! So instead of being bogged down by the pressure of what you want to be celebrate who you are as well!
|Amongst the rocks this brave flower grows!|