These are tough times for so many people. My heart aches for people that have lost their jobs and are struggling to keep their heads above water. My husband and I are fortunate to still have our jobs, but financial woes have always seemed to follow us, just like our own shadows!
I'm sure most of us can look back and remember a time in our lives when we felt like we were carrying the weight of the world on our shoulders. It could have been because of health problems, job loss, relationship issues or any number of things. It can be overwhelming.
I am an extremely positive person. I refuse to let anything get me down to the point of feeling defeated, but before you think that I have not faced adversity...trust me I have. I understand the pain. I just don't dwell on my problems. I can't.
I always see the glass as half full...even when the glass is almost empty. I think I am like that out of fear. I am afraid that if I think about the negative too much, it will suck the life right out of me...and I can't let that happen. It isn't that I am in denial....I know full well that the problem is lurking there in the shadows. I just refuse to let it consume me.
Something I do when trouble is knocking on my door is to write in my Gratitude Journal. I started mine a few years ago. My journal is a plain paper journal that someone gave me as a gift. It isn't beautiful, but it serves it's purpose. It has handmade paper and a strange taupe colored cover. It has an elastic band that use to hold it shut, but the band is all stretched out. You don't really need a fancy journal, although they are nice. A spiral notebook would work, or even just a stack of scratch paper. Whatever works for you.
I keep my journal next to my bed. I have noticed that I tend to write in spurts and it's very obvious that I turn to my "dear old friend" when times are tough, or something is on my mind. The idea behind a Gratitude Journal is to write down five things you are grateful for each and every day. It can be something really big or something really small. It doesn't matter. It's just things from that day that you are grateful for.
One day I was grateful it didn't rain all day because of all of the flooding. Another day I was grateful for the little toad that had visited our back yard. One day it was for the beautiful heron that flew overhead on my way to work, and another time it was for the beautiful flowers in our garden. A three day weekend, time spent with family, a beautiful sunset, my dogs, central air, a duck and her babies, my son coming home.....and on and on and on.