I can feel the grass under my bare feet.
I can feel the smooth caress of its freshly watered leaves crackling under my skin. It wakes me up and makes me feel energized. It makes me feel alive! I have two feet I can stand on.
During all of these years, there is one thing that I have never stopped trying to do: practicing gratitude.
I know that this word makes it sound like this is going to be some kind of new age spirituality speech, you know, about this way of life that includes meditating, doing yoga and always (always) being positive, and is supposed to give you all the answers you need in life.
Spoiler: it doesn’t work.
But this simple thing kind of actually does work.
Such a simple word (or two).
No, life is not meant to be ALWAYS positive. Of course not. There are times where shit happens and it sucks. There are wars and climate change out there. Sometimes, you lose your keys and it’s really annoying. Also, there’s famine, illnesses, accidents, heart attacks. There’s depression. I mean come on, there’s Trump.
And I’ll say it out loud: yoga is cool, sure, but yoga has just become this really trendy thing that makes it a very good business to invest in. (hippy friends, please don’t hurt me, yoga’s cool)
Finally, meditation is this thing that most of us have tried at least once or twice and really liked, but then have kept talking about how great it is ever since while telling ourselves that we should meditate more often. Without actually doing it.
Joke aside, I say that gratitude kind of works, but of course, it’s not going to bring you all the answers you need. It probably won’t bring you any, actually.
However, there is one thing it will do: it will make you feel better about yourself. And it’s easy. Even easier than meditation, where you basically have to do nothing (how are we not better at it?)
Try it. Think about one thing you are grateful for today. Just one. If you really struggle to find one, stop over-thinking.
Here’s one for you: you’re breathing. Huhu. There is air that’s passing through your lungs, making this complex thing that is your body function. It allows it to walk bare feet on wet grass, for instance.
That’s without even trying at all. If you think a bit further, remember that shower you took earlier, where hot water was coming down your body. Remember the towel you put on yourself after. Remember you got to walk to a room probably full of clothes, where you got to pick one set for the day.
Think about the hot liquid that went down your throat as you slowly came out from the mental fog that accompanies all of your early mornings. Think about that soft moment, when you were still in your sheets, embraced by your cosy bed. Think about the smiles you got to give and receive (if you haven’t done that recently, you should consider working on it). Think about all of those beautiful things that your eyes give you the possibility to see.
Or maybe you didn’t, maybe you didn’t get to feel the wet grass under your feet, because you’re in a wheel chair. Maybe you used to get to feel it, but you had a car crash. In that case, you probably had no other choice but to learn to find a thousand other little things that you can be grateful for, because you have been brutally reminded that we should never take these gifts for granted.
Maybe you didn’t get to take a shower, because that’s not a thing where you are. Maybe all you get is a bucket of cold water, which you have to use wisely because it a rare resource where you’re from. If that’s your case, you’re probably very grateful to have any water at all.
Maybe you’re wearing the same clothes everyday, because there’s no way you can afford to buy new ones. Maybe you didn’t get to drink a coffee in the morning, not because you don’t have a kettle, but because the little you’re earning, you use it to feed your family, and you can’t afford such a luxury. Maybe you don’t have a family, and maybe you didn’t get to feel the warm and fuzzy feeling of not wanting to get out of bed in the morning, because you’re sitting on a corner of a street, begging.
But that’s very unlikely. Because let’s be honest: if that was your case, you wouldn’t be here, reading this.
Which makes me think of something else we can add on that list: You got to sit in front of a computer and use this formidable tool unfolding at the tip of your fingers. The internet!
By the way, what are you doing with it? What are you using in it for? Don’t get me wrong, I by no means want you to feel guilty. I want you to feel grateful. To say thank you. I actually often forget, and when I do, I spend a lot of time aimlessly scrolling down my Facebook feed, or watching countless Youtube videos (I watch so many Youtube videos, it’s ridiculous).
I’m not saying Youtube and Facebook are not good. They can be awesome. I am grateful for their existence. When I do remember though, I want to use my fingertips to do more than that. To use those tools to say, inspire people to feel more grateful, for example.
But what I feel really grateful for today, is that I got to stand on wet grass. And somehow, that makes me feel incredibly happy. So I just thought I’d share it with you guys.
I hope you’re feeling the power of gratitude.
Thank you for tolerating my craziness
I know I’m weird
(I even hug trees sometimes. What can I say, I was feeling grateful for all the air they were allowing me to breathe and all the beauty. It felt amazing, you should try!)
Okay I should stop
Yes, there’s a good chance that if you often read me, or if you agree with that last sentence, that you are crazy too
Let’s be crazy and grateful together!