Coronavirus · Dancing · Gratitude · My Thoughts · Recovery

Grateful Now? Why?


Why grateful now? The coronavirus has ruined plans for most of 2020, and now threatens to affect Thanksgiving plans! Many have died or lost family or friends. Irreparable losses! Cancellations, shelter-in-place, a world turned upside down! Is gratitude even possible in 2020?

For me, gratitude changes everything, but I’m not talking about an unrealistic Pollyanna attitude. Gratitude is a paradigm shift—a fractional shift one direction or the other off of the coronavirus to a larger, more glorious world.

So why is gratitude important now? For me, it’s an attitude that changes my perspective. I can focus on the negative, an easy choice. So the chaos and horror of the pandemic take over, and I obsess about today’s totals. Seeing what’s wrong comes naturally. Gratitude asks me to dig deeper and take a different route. Personally, I’ve had minimal losses, yet it has taken its toll on me but nothing like many with gigantic losses.

So what’s the power of gratitude? I concentrate on the positive, what’s right with the world, what I love about my life and suddenly I feel different!

The best way to be grateful: write a gratitude list. I learned about this tool in recovery. How do you do that? List two, five, ten things I’ve grateful for. Start small and increase as you practice this. In doing this, I take the focus off the problem and celebrate the solution.

Gratitude list

On November 19, 2020 here’s my gratitude list:

1. My sobriety

2. My God

3. My husband, Lin

4. My brother, Bub

5. My health

6. My family

7. My friends

8. My cat, Jesse

9. Our family ranch

10. My love of dancing

Today I sit in the waiting room at my husband, Lin’s eye doctor. He sits in an adjacent room, having his second cataract surgery in a month or so. The success of the first one prepared him for today’s ordeal. His natural grateful spirit often shows me the power of gratitude for the seemingly small things. His positive attitude contributed to the success of the other surgery, so I know the same thankful attitude will affect the outcome of this one.

Okay, it’s your turn! For what are you grateful? If you name someone specifically, be sure and tell he/she made your gratitude list today! I’d love to hear what you are grateful for during these hard times.

~My other current blog post, “Poetic View: Nine Months Later,” faces life after nine months with the coronavirus pandemic.

3 thoughts on “Grateful Now? Why?

  1. Larada, I just read all of your November blogs. Thank you so much.

    LOVE love love the hair differences and pics to go with– and the symbolism it holds of such a different life in COVID times.  And how, after COVID, we can “take what we like and leave the rest” from the experiences and lifestyle we had during COVID. Agreed that this is no Pollyanna attitude- it is sheer wisdom. And acceptance. That the good and bad experiences exist side by side.

    I was thinking about how you noted that tendency to follow the COVID numbers, the bad news. To focus on the news and on the negative trends and difficulties of COVID seems to come naturally to me, as you pointed it out that it does for you. I think it does for all of us. I think it’s part of our human nature.

     Richard Rohr writes about that– how neuroscience shows that our brains are WIRED for the propensity to focus on negatives.  Part of how we survived on the Savannah but like many old coping tools, this one, which I think explains addiction to the news, might not be working for us today.  As my first AA sponsor put it: “How’s it working out for you?”  For me, it’s not working out well to keep the news on.  I need other voices in my environment so I’m getting into my new substitute addiction: podcasts!!!  

    1. Amber, thanks so much for your comments. I appreciate it anytime someone responds to my words and thoughts! That’s the joy of blogging! I have gone a week without looking at the news the first thing in the morning after hearing someone at my home group speak about the conviction in his heart about that habit. We’ve talked about it before, but it took another spotlight on that bad habit to open my eyes!

Hey, there! I would love to hear from you!

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