Posted by Todd Smith
I am feeling heaviness in the air. I am not sure if it’s because of our prolonged recessionary period, the fact that so many people are struggling financially, the long, cold winter, or a combination of all of the above. But whatever the reasons are, I feel it’s time to put things in perspective and focus on our blessings.
If you are going through a challenging period of time in your life, I bet the woman in the attached photo would trade with you in a heartbeat. Take a couple of minutes and imagine her life: sleeping on the ground every night trying to keep her children warm; having no access to clean drinking water; standing in long lines for food; getting soaked every time it rains; and not having a change of clothes, toilet paper, or a toothbrush.
Yes…your life may not be turning out exactly how you envisioned it would. But if you are reading or listening to this on your computer, you have it a whole lot better than more than 5 billion people who don’t have this simple luxury.
If a mother and a father raised you, you have it better than 132 million orphans who didn’t have that opportunity.
If you can see, you have it better than the 40 million people who are blind.
If you can walk, you have it better than the 250,000 Americans who are paralyzed.
If your home gets foreclosed and you have to sleep in your car, you are luckier than the 5 billion people who don’t have a car.
When you are crying in the shower about a problem, be happy you are standing in a shower. Over one billion people don’t have this ordinary convenience.
Next time you want to complain about your job, just remember there are 239 million adults who wished they had a job to complain about.
No matter how bad you think your life is, stop to consider that you have it better than more than 775 million illiterate people who wouldn’t be able to read this post if it was written in their native language.
If you will focus on all the things you are truly blessed to have, rather than your problems and what you don’t have, you will be happier and have a better outlook on your life. This change in attitude will improve everything: your career, your relationships, and your self-esteem. After all, it is almost impossible to advance your life forward when you obsess about your problems.
If you are currently going through a difficult period, remember that you are in control of your thoughts and actions. You can choose to continue to wallow in your disappointments or you can take control of your life, turn the page on this chapter, and begin to write the next one. I also suggest reading my post It’s a New Day.
Regardless of whether you feel like your “life is like a bowl of cherries” or it seems like you’ve been run over by a Mack truck, take 10 minutes today and write down everything for which you are thankful. If you struggle to come up with a long enough list, just think about your daily routine and your possessions and visualize the woman in the photo and her life.
When we stop to consider all the ways our lives have been blessed, we can be grateful for what we have.
Encouragement, Hope, Priorities, Spiritual
Todd Smith is a successful entrepreneur of 43 years and founder of Little Things Matter. This blog contains over 200 of his timeless life lessons.
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