You know the feeling when you see cherry blossoms in full bloom or when the intoxicating fragrance of hyacinths fills your being? Or when you just feel on top of the world because everything is going your way or you just feel an inner fulfillment? What if you could feel that way all the time, regardless of circumstances? Would gratitude have anything to do with it? Feeling truly grateful for the air you breathe, all your senses, physical and metaphysical, the simple pleasures of life, and all your blessings great and small?
In times of plenty it is easy to take for granted the abundance that we enjoy so readily. When hardship hits, however, we are reminded of how easily we can lose our good fortune. We realize how important it is, more than ever, to be truly grateful for what we have. We have our health, food, shelter, love, family, money and innumerable opportunities for learning and growth. We have a physical body that enables us to attend the school of Planet Earth every day and refine ourselves. How else could we expand and deepen our awareness through all our experiences and interactions? Every breath is a new opportunity. Every day is a new beginning.
Many people rejoice when a new year celebration is approaching. They indulge in that feeling of joy and abundance, but then eventually that feeling wears off, until the calendar reminds them that once again it is time to be happy! What if we could preserve that feeling of prosperity all year? Then, regardless of circumstances, we can remain grounded and grateful.
A friend recently went through a series of what many people would call setbacks. However, she treated each one as an opportunity for growth. When she was diagnosed with a serious health issue, after the initial shock and anxiety, she saw it as an opportunity to be more proactive and in charge of her health, as well as appreciate what others in her situation experience and have more empathy for health care providers. Then, when she was evacuated from her building because of fire and water damage, she was determined to overcome all the challenges with more patience, teamwork with neighbours, community members and her family, and enjoy new surroundings and relationships. When there were deaths in the family, she was again grateful for all the people in her life that helped with the situation and deepened her appreciation of the connectedness of all of life.
Life is full of challenges. When we overcome one, you can be sure there will be others. So we might as well learn how to face them without suffering. You could even see everything as an adventure!
Here are some tips for living an abundant life:
- Listen to your heart, trust your intuition and create a path that you enjoy.
- Cultivate a rich inner life. It will keep you resilient and steadfast, especially in the face of turbulence in life.
- Be determined to see the positive in any situation. Have patience with yourself and others.
- Celebrate life every day. Nurture your inner child. Create, play, dance, sing, be silly, laugh.
- Be aware of and release self-sabotaging emotions and behaviour. Acknowledge your own great qualities and accomplishments.
- Look after yourself and your health. Get regular exercise, eat well and connect to your inner being and light.
- Give to others without expectations. Give for the joy and fulfillment. Whatever it is that you expect others to do for you, do it for them. Then watch it come back to you.
- Let go of attachments. Everything is transitory. Live in the present and love with all your heart.
The opportunities we have in life combined with a positive attitude can help us create a rich life. What good is material abundance if you don’t enjoy everything else in your life? Embrace the good, kind, sharing, caring part of you with all your being, and you will have all the riches you could ever need or want.