I don’t think I use gratitude to express my appreciation for things in life often. It usually takes me a reminder or some sort of inspiration to express gratitude and thankfulness. Whenever I tell myself I’m going to try to be a more gracious and kind person, one of the first things I run to is trying to be grateful for the things I have in life. My parents think it’s really important to be grateful in life, though I don’t ever see them really practicing it, I guess it’s easier said than done. It tends to be when I take things for granted, then they yell at me to be grateful. I usually brush it off like “whatever” but then after I tend to reflect and try to think about things I should be grateful for.
Using the activities in Active Hope, I seemed to learn about myself that I value the relationships in my life the most. The relationship I have with my family, my significant other, my dog, and my friends are all things I’m extremely grateful for. There aren’t things that I do to regularly remind myself to have gratitude for the world and the surroundings, but I do think I do an okay job at showing gratitude to some people in my life, like my significant other, dog, and friends. I should work on being grateful for my parents.
I think living in a growth-centric world makes us not grateful as a whole and as individuals. I think with the way that marketing and advertisements are made, it makes us want more and more and never lets us think that we have enough to be grateful for, otherwise it wouldn’t be a good advertisement for whatever they are trying to sell us. I think that a society like ours, it is almost natural to just compare ourselves to whoever and whatever, and reflect that we aren’t as good as anybody else. This leads to buying new things to change ourselves and thus makes the economy grow the more we dislike ourselves. As a whole, we are always working to grow as a society and an economy, doing whatever we can to use or exploit people and land. If we showed gratitude for our people or land, the earth would not be suffering this much, people wouldn’t be so unhappy. I think spreading gratitude would be a step to making people more happy and open minded to change and helping the earth and its people.