I think gratefulness, gratitude, and humbling one’s self is all about self awareness. We can become more self aware by consciously, continuously, actively participating in self reflection. For me, cultivating these traits is a simple thing. All I have to do is look around.
Although there is power and purpose in doing this 365 days a year, there is still magic in doing it now. There is magic in a ripple effect.
I could, at any given moment, have less. I’ve had less before — much less. I’ve had so much less that I didn’t even have a place to live.
Then, there is the terrifying realization that I could have even less than the less I once had before, which, in that moment, I felt I could not survive. So, there is always the possibility of not surviving something worse (such as street homelessness in the dead of winter, coupled with crippling mental illness — or worse, I mean there is always worse.)
Of course, I could have more. So much more that what I have now could feel insignificant, instead of how enormous, how magnificent, it feels right now.
Perspective tells me, life experience tells me, that I can lose it all again.
In that thought, in that merciless reality, in that calmness, I ground myself with the realization that it is only this moment that really matters.
If this is to be true, if nothing is more significant than right now, there is no pain or suffering greater than right now, then we have no choice but to humble ourselves. Because of how fleeting this moment is, no moment is more important.
If there is nothing more important than the words I type right now, than the creaking of these floor boards, than the song that plays in the background, than the tapping of one’s foot against a beat
— then there is no reason not to extend kindness to others.
There is no reason not to serve others.
There is no reason to not exemplify grace and mercy.
There is no reason not to love.