They say gratefulness is the number #1 way to just stomp those cute pointed-toe booties on the comparison game.
I’m not sure about you, but for me – finding contentment with smartphone in hand seems to be a constant (and daily) challenge. I would be lying if I said I didn’t personally deal with comparison due to social media comparison .every. single. day. when I’m sure what I paint on social media (being that’s where my job lies) seems quite the opposite.
But it’s something I’m working on. I don’t have the beat-comparison-recipe on lockdown, and I haven’t nailed the formula – but I am aware of the somewhat-hurricane-esque-feelings that social media simply drops into my mind repetitively throughout each day. Instead of drowning in the world that is simultaneously created by a digital era, taking myself back down to reality (the *real* reality) and filling it with gratitude is Step 1. With the most praise-filled holiday just around the corner, I’ve cultivated a little list of what’s working for me right now and thought it may be helpful in the midst of all of the holiday buzz. Lez go.
Here are a couple of ideas of how we can work on gratitude together:
- Eliminate hurriedness and busyness. I put this one first because I feel this is the hardest step for me to overcome. The key issue with hurriedness and busyness is the lack of downtime. Without essential “boredom,” it’s hard for creative juices to flow, and for feelings of gratefulness to flourish. If you’re too focused on your next to-do, you haven’t had a moment to applaud yourself for nailing your last one. When was the last time anyone in the 21st century encouraged stillness? Gosh, just reading that word I feel better. We live in an incredibly fast, impulsive age and that is stealing our most precious time to sit back and feel grateful.
- Spend more time in the world around you than the world inside your phone. It’s really difficult for me to calm my forever-bouncing “monkey brain” mind. I’ve learned that putting my phone inside my apartment, and heading outdoors to be in quiet *every single day* is a step in the right direction. In the midst of silence, I can realize how beautiful the *real world* is around me. Nature is the perfect backdrop for feelings of gratitude. Plus it, adds a bullet point to your what-to-be-grateful-for list, because nature ain’t goin’ anywhere, my pretty peeps.
- Celebrate good health. The vanity of social media has taken away the power of what’s really important in life. Good health? Not exactly something that’s applauded on my feeds (I would say likes, clothes, pretty hair, etc. take the cake). Good health is something I’m not thankful for enough and I’m aware of that. I think the older we get, we realize how health is a gift, and one to be thankful for (every moment of every day). I’ve been trying to take this as far as thanking God for Chloe’s health (my dog) on a once-or-twice a day basis. Every ounce counts, and truly makes me realize what’s really important.
- Take a break from Instagram Stories. Calling all generation tech: Do you ever just get on Instagram, then start scrolling through IG stories, wake up from the lull and suddenly 30 minutes has simply just poofed into thin air? When I start to think of all the things I could have accomplished, the conversations I could have had, the exercise, the mental stimulation – I genuinely get upset with myself for falling in the trap. Ever since I realized this pattern, I’ve attempted to make strides to not fall to the IG story game. These stories definitely steal a sense of peace from my daily to-do’s, adding less motivation to feel grateful for what’s in my life, and focusing on theirs.
- Focus on the present. The more time I spend worrying and thinking about the what-if’s of the future, the more of the present I’m missing. A spirit of gratitude takes the power away from future thinking and allows you to put it in the “now.” I’ve been suffering from the “time is flying by” syndrome and I’ve realized it’s because of thinking, planning, and manipulating too far into the future’s unknown. I’m going to give you guys a Bible verse for this one: Matthew 6:34. “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.”
Hand in hand, you and I can take steps towards counting our blessings – not once, not twice, but all the time.
Happy Thanksgiving, loves. Hope you have a gratefully warm and turkey-stuffed one! XOXO
Image via pinterest. Image source: Dreams for Breakfast