If you do not live a life of gratitude at the moment then there is no need to worry. The good news is that you can learn gratitude and that is what this chapter is all about. You will need to be prepared to apply what you learn here and put in consistent effort but the rewards will be worth it as it will totally transform your life.
Most people do not have a problem expressing gratitude when things are going well for them. But when they are having a bad time, or even facing a crisis, most people do not even think about expressing gratitude.
We want to emphasize that gratitude is a state of mind. It is nothing more than that. This is good news as it means that with a change of mindset you can find a good reason to be grateful even when all around you seems to be falling apart.
It doesn’t matter how bad things appear to you can always be grateful for something. Always bear in mind that we are here for a relatively short time and as long as we are alive and breathing then this is something that we can easily appreciate.
When things go really wrong in your life, which everyone has to face from time to time, with an attitude of gratitude you will always believe that things will improve. If you know someone with an attitude of gratitude watch how they conduct themselves and you will soon start to see a number of common themes and behaviors.
People with an attitude of gratitude have realistic expectations
You can have the most detailed plans in the world but you always need to accept that life rarely turns out the way that you expect it to. This is why a lot of the top students in schools and colleges do not do any better in their lives than average students do.
There are countless examples of people that you believe have less talent than you get the promotion that you desired. Or maybe you knew someone at school that did badly and suddenly you discover that they started their own business and are experiencing wild success.
Nobody knows what the future holds for them. They can influence it to a large extent and we strongly recommend that you do that. But you need to be prepared for those surprises that life often throws up. With an attitude of gratitude you will always be able to see these things as opportunities and make the most from them.
Unconditional happiness goes with an attitude of gratitude
People that practice gratitude don’t set prior conditions for happiness because they know that they will not achieve this. A condition could be that you need to own a luxury car to be happy. If you don’t have this car then you will not be happy. Waiting around to get this dream car will just depress you.
People that have an attitude of gratitude see good every day in their lives. They appreciate the small and big things in their lives and happiness comes easy to them. So if you want to be happy throughout your life then you need to cultivate unconditional gratitude. Never base your happiness on wanting someone or something in your life.
People with an attitude of gratitude know good comes with Bad
You need to accept that in life good comes with bad. When you do this it will be easier for you to be grateful for all of the good things that you have in your life while at the same time accepting that it is very likely that there could be a corresponding bad side to these things.
So for example when you enjoy all that the summer sun brings you there is a reality within you that accepts that a cold winter will follow shortly afterwards. Or if it is pouring with rain outside you accept that at some stage the rain will stop and the sun will come out and shine.
Attitude of gratitude people are optimists
Once you get into the habit of expressing gratitude for the smallest things you will find that any changes in your life will not faze you at all no matter how significant they are. This is because you will be an eternal optimist and you will only need the merest glimmer of hope to be happy in your life.
People that practice gratitude regularly are always optimistic about their future. They fully appreciate how far they have come in life and celebrate the small victories they have achieved. Optimism is something that you want to welcome with open arms as it is far better than pessimism that will drain you all of the time.
So now you have the main learning points for developing an attitude of gratitude. By following these principles and practicing expressing gratitude regularly you will find that all of these things easily slot into place. You can learn gratitude quickly and easily by following these principles so keep on going and never give up!