We’re wrapped up in this idea that in order to love ourselves, we have to change. As progressive a mentality as that may be, it is such a toxic perspective thinking that we’re not good enough until we do this, have this, look like this. At what point will we ever love ourselves in a world that perpetually vomits unrealistic and virtually unattainable standards at us?
A concept that has challenged me lately is that by finding gratitude in the details, we will find serenity in the whole. By looking at the span of a day and picking out the smallest things to be thankful for (i.e.; morning coffee, green lights, a functioning toilet) we begin to overlook our fickle vexations and instead being overwhelmed with the now evident abundance of blessings in our lives that we so often ignore. Think of it this way: if you look at an empty field, spanning beyond your periphery with dead grass, broken up by a single flower standing tall in the center, your eyes will likely be drawn to it, appreciating it’s life and beauty in the midst of unappealing weeds. Metaphorically, this is probably similar to our thoughts on a daily basis: more ugly than not. That being said, ask yourself this: Do I focus on the flower? Or the weeds?
Imagine that kind of transformation within a day, a year, a lifetime. Imagine the atmosphere of gratitude that would recondition the natural thought pattern of your lifestyle. Then take that and multiply in by the lives you touch on a daily basis. Suddenly, a community of optimists grows tenfold with all the people changed by that small flower of thought in the middle of negativity.
The idea that I am in control of the outcome of my day still seems foreign to me and is certainly something I still work on daily. I read somewhere that no one can affect my day unless I let them, and while at first I brushed that off as a ridiculous thought, admittedly guilty of passing the blame off onto someone else when I’m in a bad mood, the idea grew on me, challenging me to take adversity and turn it into a reminder to count my blessings.
I’m challenging myself to dwell not on the empty field, but on the single flower that blooms, regardless of what it’s up against; and daily, I’m seeing the difference.