"We think too much about what goes wrong and not enough about what goes right in our lives. Of course, sometimes it makes sense to analyze bad events so that we can learn from them and avoid them in the future. However, people tend to spend more time thinking about what is bad in life than is helpful. Worse, this focus on negative events sets us up for anxiety and depression. One way to keep this from happening is to get better at thinking about and savoring what went well."
Grandpa was quite good at doing it, he was the appreciator master. Grandpa was a spiritual man. One of the first memories regarding meditation and appreciation came from him. I remember being around to spend our school holidays with him. We used to sit around the dinner table every Wednesday night and he used to thank everything and everyone that came or crossed our way that week. The old man used to remember every single moment, every single detail. - thanks for the rain yesterday, thanks about the spaghetti we ate last Sunday, thanks for the water, thanks for this and thanks for that. We used to thank everything and meditate around the table.
It was beautiful.
Fast forwarding time, I jumped myself deeply into meditation when I started dealing with neuropathic pain, that can sometimes literally also be called pain in the ass! Neuro-pain is not fun and one of tools I use to deal with it is mindfulness meditation. I use an app called Headspace.
Headspace has a series of guided meditation sessions and one of the pack is called appreciation.
With so much going on in life, it is quite difficult sometimes to be present, to appreciate what is going on around us, what we already got. Very often we tend to look at the future thinking what might be or we look at the past thinking what could have been.
This quick exercise is designed to help us to really spend more time in the present. To cultivate a genuinely sense of gratitude for what we have got right now.
Even if that's a pain the ass.
As you go into this day, try to pause during the day for at least 10 or 20 seconds, get yourself comfortable, be aware of your breath and ask yourself;
-Who or What do you appreciate most in your life have right now?
While asking yourself that, even if you are not new to meditation, try to maintain a beginners mind, as you are doing it for the very first time and always ask the question as you never asked the question before, as you are asking another person, not knowing, expecting or anticipating what the answer would be. When you do the exercise this way it creates a spacious mind which appreciation can naturally arise.
Take the time to notice when you do that how the moods shift, how it changes perhaps the busyness of the mind, how it perharps shift the attention or the focus on a particularly emotion or feeling. Being fully aware of how this feeling of appreciation can really allow us to be more present in the world, more connected with the people around us.
Once you familiarize yourself with the physical senses and the feeling, try to be aware of how you feel and aware of that intention to carry the quality of appreciation with you into the day, to remind yourself periodically throughout the day, of what that feeling was like.
Remind yourself that life is a gift. Life goes quick. Appreciate the moment . Appreciate what you already have.
Be well folks and keep your heads high. There is good in this world.