I've determined to make my word this year, "gratitude". I like this word because it challenges me. I hate it because it challenges me. But it's an attitude I want to possess even when I don't like my circumstances. That tends to happen more than I'd like it to, so practicing gratitude seems kinda fitting.
The other morning, it was definitely put into practice in a way I wish it hadn't. I suppose that's how these characteristics work when you want to learn them. I found myself frustrated at how something had worked out on my way to work one morning.... Everything that was included in that frustration came through my mouth in a bout of telling God I couldn't understand why. Hmmmmmm..... Yup, I still have tons of those moments.
But then I thought of gratitude. Stemmed from a message I heard or a part in a book I read (I can't remember which one it was), I started thinking of how I have a job. I have a job I can walk to. I have a paycheck that pays for the roof over my head. I have legs to walk with, lungs to breathe with, and a place to call home. As you can imagine, I was frustrated with the transit system. The bus was almost thirty minutes late, which put me into a panic to get to work on time. I was still recovering from being sick and the cold air had made it hard for me to breathe before that. So, I decided I was going to take the bus because I wasn't sure how I'd do walking after having two days of rest. Only problem was, I decided to walk because of my panic... and of course, the bus flew by me a mile later. Luckily I made it to work on time anyway, but I'm not sure I'll try taking the bus again for that matter.
This situation got me thinking a lot about how we approach things. Our attitude is our choice to make. We can be unhappy about how a lot of things work out, but that wasted energy does not change the situation. If I had my guess, we huff and puff because we want something done differently. It's almost manipulative of us to act this way until someone or something bends for us. It's another reason why I want to practice gratitude. When we put things into motion as habit, it becomes our nature. And it stays our nature as long as we choose it to. It's crazy how much we can change if we just make the choice. I want to be more thankful for what I have... And I want to be thankful for it even when there doesn't seem to be anything to be thankful for.