For some gratitude practice is easy, for others its harder during difficult periods and for some it's hard every single day!
We have all heard the saying what you put out energetically is what you receive back and it is true. It's why gratitude practice is so powerful as in our best times we attract more of the same and in our worst it can change our energy assisting us in turning a corner. It only works however if you truly feel that gratitude within, just saying the words or writing a list does not have the same effect.
The issue there is in our darkest times, when we feel we have nothing to be grateful for what do we do?
First, we redefine gratitude from a lot of what we see and hear on socials. I can't tell you how many posts I see with examples of gratitude and its......my holiday to some exotic place, buying a new home, the birth of a baby, some extravagant gift or purchase, pay rise at work etc. Now there is absolutely nothing wrong with being grateful for those things, they are wonderful and should be part of our gratitude practice.
However, it's little help to those in financial struggle, who have chronic illness, feel alone etc. In these situations, many of the above simply won't apply and just thinking about them brings sadness.
Let's look at chronic illness for a moment, it's soul destroying, limiting, never ending and completely changes what would have been the direction of your life. Maybe you have been in bed for a week and finally you are just well enough to go for a walk or sit in the garden. Gratitude here would be leaning into the blessing of simply being able to walk or make it downstairs to sit in the garden and focusing on the gratitude of what joy you felt in that moment.
Society has become somewhat programmed with big events and things in people's lives, we are in a world where everything ends up on socials and there is a lot of expectation around what life should be from socials and TV. So when we think gratitude we don't necessarily think walking, making it out of bed, laughing with a friend or partner. These moment however, even if small or fleeting can mean just as much, if not more than a exotic holiday to the huge number of people with chronic illness, depression, loss and more.
So, if like many you are going through a tough time in your life, suffer with chronic illness or something similar remember there is still space for gratitude. Do not be put off if what you're grateful for is what someone else would consider insignificant or take for granted. If anything, your depth of feeling into that gratitude could be deeper and more potent for having that moment during your walk listening to the birds compared to someone's new car, as it means so very much and you went through a lot to get to that moment.