An Attitude of Radical Gratitude.
So I’ve been practicing something I personally call “radical gratitude” and it has changed my life. I outline exactly how I do this here and the effects it has had for me and others as well. This post has been well received, for which I am thankful as I put a lot of time and thought into it because I truly want to help others change their lives since I finally figured out what works for me. When I posted this on Facebook, it sparked an amazing discussion in the comments with people sharing their incredible experiences!
If you don’t read this whole post, let me give you one small suggestion real quick – DON’T DOWNPLAY THE SMALL THINGS! As they come up, just try to consciously think to yourself “hey, that was actually kind of cool!” By making a habit to acknowledge the small things as they arise, you are working to engrain thoughtfully thoughtless gratitude into your daily life and practices.
I challenge everyone to try to adopt this practice. It’s admittedly really hard at first but then it actually starts to come naturally. I didn’t feel thankful at first but now I honestly do. It’s genuine.
So what radical gratitude is for me is that I try to find something to be thankful for in everything I do, including grieving Sean, Arman, and the countless other friends and family members I have lost. And you know what! There was only one time I wasn’t able to find something to be grateful for, but I talked with some people, looked through some pictures, shared some stories, hung out with my cat, and was overall thankful for everything, especially my cat and my friend, Mary. It was a good experience to have because I learned I can always find something for which to be thankful. If you ever can’t think of something to be grateful for, I urge you to please reach out. Maybe even I can help you figure something out?
Someone asked for an example of something that had been really hard for me to be thankful for. So like, I lost my fiancé, Sean, who I was with forever in June 2020 and another boyfriend/best friend I was with for a few years, Arman, in the summer a few years before Sean and I started dating. (summer just isn’t my season apparently when it used to be my favorite, oh well). I got a little bit of blame in both their deaths as I was the last person to see them alive and I couldn’t do enough to save them. Please don’t ever make anyone feel this way! They were my all day everyday men so my life dramatically changed as they were ripped away from me and I now had empty days. I was with both of them forever, too. BUT I am so lucky to have been so in love twice that the pain was worth it. Most people don’t get that even once. Our last words were I love yous. I was even thankful I spent my 23rd birthday at Arman’s funeral as I couldn’t think of a better way to spend that day given that he had just died. And man, they were such handsome men!
So also what I also do is I try to always be thankful in my daily life and make sure everyone knows it. I say “thank you” so many times a day and always support them by explaining why I am thankful, which must be nice for other people to know how much I value them. That way the words aren’t shallow and meaningless too! If I am able to and someone goes above and beyond, I write a letter about what someone did for me and send it to the right people. At the very least, it must be awesome for the person to hear what I had to say, but I also try to advocate for them. Today I wrote a letter explaining how a temporary receptionist I often see isn’t being used to their whole potential and advocated for them to get a scholarship in an effective way, supporting my claims. I really feel this might get the amazing person an offer of a permanent position and I know I laid out why in an effective manner. I let the company know that they would be doing him, themselves, and everyone who interacts with him a disservice.
If I can’t address my thanks in other ways, I often post about it on Facebook to let the world know I appreciate it. People tend to like those posts, especially if they’re about my emotional support cat, Patches and I include a cute picture of her, like I did here. Everyone loves pets and she’s one of the people for whom I’m most grateful! I’ve been planning a post about her for a while, so look out for it in the near future! 😸
One of my favorite things i recently started doing is making public people gratitude lists. I didn’t even really think this up, it just happened accidentally because I have so many truly amazing people in my life that I’m truly blessed to have connected with and have in my life. This is a ridiculously effective way to get the people you cherish back by boosting them up! Basically under one of my one of my now numerous gratitude posts, I simply tag some friends who have gone above and beyond recently and let the world know exactly what they did! I’ve been told that it makes these people’s efforts and time spent feel truly valued!
I know people often talk about gratitude lists at the end of the day as being important. I was never able to do them before, but now I can say I don’t have to do so. By acknowledging my gratitude immediately as it comes up, and it comes up all the time, I end every day thankful and I’m ready to start tomorrow, which has never been the case before.
Please try to incorporate radical gratitude on your everyday life. It’s saved mine and made it worth living. I know it’s really hard but it’s SO worth it. If you try and it doesn’t work out, I’ll give you your money back… Protip: gratitude is free. 💸💸💸
I used to be such a dark, cynical, pessimistic person but now I can disgustingly say I’m a positive person. Ugh, gross. My old self is disgusted with my current self, haha. And people have noticed this new person I am about me! I still like everything dark.
Right now I’m grateful for my gifts as a writer, having a platform, love, friends, Sean and Arman, my cat, and ice cream! 😸🍨