When you learn to want what you already have instead of focusing on attaining the things you don’t have, a sense of permanent satisfaction for your life can be obtained.
When this invaluable life skill is added to one’s arsenal, the true value of what we do have in life is clearly acknowledged, and it makes us realize with full awareness that they aren’t ours forever and can be taken away in an instant.
This knowledge enriches all of life’s experiences and the feelings that derive from recognizing each enriched experience is what we call being fulfilled.
Ultimately, we all innately strive to live fulfilling lives.
This leads us to the question:
How exactly do we go about learning to want what we already have while not focusing on what we don’t have, so that we can achieve a sense of fulfillment?
Gratitude is the answer.
By planting seeds of reminders to repeatedly focus your attention on what in your life you’re thankful for, a habit can form.
This habit then begins to work in the background of your life, (through a network of neurons located in the brainstem called the Reticular Activating System, which filters out unnecessary information so that it can focus on bringing in more important information) unconsciously searching for references of what else can be brought into your conscious awareness to start appreciating more.
Every time a brief conscious recognition of gratitude occurs for even the smallest thing, positive feelings are expressed from within, bringing you joy and happiness in that present moment.
These emotions stay with you long after you knowingly realize and with consistency, they start to impact the wiring of your brain.
This process, known as neuroplasticity, reprograms neural connections inside your brain, which in return leads to directly influencing your thoughts as well as your perceptions and how you understand things and give meaning to them.
Through repetition over time, your subconscious will feed you new things to appreciate and different ways to be thankful for what you have, leading to a literal transformation in your brain and as a result, in your life.
Makes you want to start practicing gratitude a bit more in your life, huh?
Spending copious amounts of time mindlessly comparing ourselves to others and thinking about what they have that we don’t is a suckers game that provides us with no value and only brings rise to negative emotions.
It’s when we focus our attention and thoughts toward the abundance of what we do have in this world that we begin to appreciate what’s most precious and priceless to us in the present moment.
The garden of the soul lives in the now, where beautifully vibrant flowers of joy, peace and satisfaction are constantly springing about and flourishing.
A sense of perpetual fulfillment in each moment is yours for the taking.
Capture it through the practice of gratitude.
“Treat what you don’t have as non-existent. Look at what you have, the things you value most, and think of how much you’d crave them if you didn’t have them.” – Marcus Aurelius