I have learned the ticket through life is gratitude. It's a shame we are not taught how to be grateful in school. Of all the subjects we are shown, I believe being grateful would be the most useful. It is hard to get through life without appreciation. Think of the dependency we have as human beings. From the moment we are formed we need the nutrients from our host, the body of our own mother just to survive. Once we are born, we need love, care, attention, touch, even air to sustain ourselves. But gratitude...that is what we often forget.
Let's be real. Things are going to happen. Unexpected things. Things that will take us off course, hold us back, even bring us down as much as we allow them. With gratitude you're given a way to hope for better, to provide something more for yourself and to escape from the crappy things that so often try to break us. Think of it as silver lining. There are things that will be hard to overcome: the loss of a loved one, losing a job, or getting injured. If you find and focus on the positive aspects of it all—the time spent with that person, the skills you gained, or learning to take better care of yourself—if you are able to find the benefit from the experience, things can turn around, and eventually, they WILL. For most of us it's just a glimmer of hope. It's those moments we believe in ourselves at our lowest point that can actually turn out to be our brightest turning point. We can learn to celebrate our silver lining, instead of suffering the loss.
As humans we are not intended to stay stagnant. We are intended to progress, to thrive, and make the most of our short lived time on this planet. There are so many of us walking around on auto-pilot like zombies. We settle in to our lives with these jobs or relationships that have a tendency to steal our soul. It's easy to become complacent by staying where we are and becoming stagnant to these things and people that are hindering us. That's not what is intended for us and until we wake up from our zombie-like state we are honestly not living our true life and our highest potential. We focus on this nonstop grind of making money day after day but there truly is more... don't you think? I recently read The Seven Spiritual Laws of Success and I found one of the points most interesting. It was the fourth law, "The Law of Least Effort," which translates to "do less, accomplish more." Nature does not force itself to accomplish anything, it flows easily and effortlessly because it is channeled by love. In other words, your energy never has to be wasted. If you are able to channel it into love and gratitude, you are able to accomplish more because you're coming from a place of motivation.
To explain gratitude, it is like a boomerang. The energy you put out is what comes back to you. Gratitude is your instant reflection and although it may not have immediate rewards it does pay off by showing you how the things you want to attract to you can be manifested. How many times have you thought about something you've wanted then you see it on sale somewhere, or better yet, it is gifted to you? How many times have you thought about someone, then they call you out of the blue? The Law of Attraction works in mysterious ways and it's best to always use it to your benefit.
Gratitude does require effort. I try to take certain points of my day to say a simple "Thank you" for my needs and for my existence. It could start in the morning as soon as you open your eyes — give thanks for another day. Getting out of bed with little to no aches — give thanks. Having a sound mind, healthy body, roof over your head, bed to sleep, clothes to wear, food to eat, and so on — give thanks! I like to give thanks before every meal for the nourishment provided for my body. You can give thanks for just about everything and I highly recommend the exercise. You could make a list of three things to be grateful for everyday. Not only does it allow you to take inventory for all you have, it is a great reminder that you are truly blessed. Having gratitude is your expression that you value what you have, therefore, you are ready to receive more. It's not just for material things, it extends into your relationships, your health, your entire life. It is symbolic for appreciating all experiences and circumstances no matter how difficult they may be and knowing that you have enough. It's trusting there is something greater than you providing for you.