I wouldn’t necessarily say I’m an overly religious person. I am Catholic, born and raised, although I do take issue with many of the teachings and beliefs that exist within Catholicism, so I prefer to identify as someone who is spiritual.
I’m not sure if that statement is a paradox, but we’re going to roll with it for now.
I pray daily, and recently, I realized that in my prayers I wasn’t really acknowledging things in my life I often take for granted and that I am thankful for. I began incorporating a list of things I am grateful for into my daily prayers, and I quickly realized that my gratitude list not only expanded each day I recited it, but further, that there are plenty of things I often completely overlook in my life that are considered privileges.
When I first started pondering what I appreciate in my life, many of the things I initially thought of are materialistic, for example, a beautiful home, a vehicle, access to food and water essentially at my utmost convenience, etc. Upon further contemplation, however, I started thinking of some things that aren’t tangible but are equally valuable in terms of their worth, for example, to feel and experience love, to be able to think and move independently, the ability to see, hear, speak and write, and the fact that I live in a region of the world that is progressive and recognizes individual rights and freedoms.
Plenty of folks keep a gratitude journal and write in it daily, and while I absolutely applaud and encourage this practice, you don’t necessarily need a journal to acknowledge what you are thankful for. Take some time and consider what it is in your own life you appreciate, and chances are you’ll surprise yourself with how many things we unintentionally take advantage of.
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