‘Do something today that your tomorrow self will be grateful for’. I have read many inspirational quotes over time and this is one that has really resonated with me, so I considered how far I have actually applied this to my life.
There is the utter glory of a ‘to do’ list. When everything is checked off, I feel proud, and then I can make a fresh list. It is a perpetual cycle of work. A’ to do’ list reminds me of all the things I might otherwise forget, thus wherever I am in the list, it feels that there will always be more list. But this does sort of keep me on track, mostly.
The flip side of the list of many, many things is it creates guilt. It sits quietly on my desk mocking me, passively judging the game of colour matching that I am playing on facebook because the mental weight of the list has reduced me to apathy. And when I tick off ‘washing up’ both myself and the list know it was a five-minute task. And there is a fifteen hundred word proposal to write (the list knows this too). However, in terms of the things actually on the list, there is utter equality in the pen that crosses through them.
The list is most definitely a mixed blessing, but being grateful for what I do today doesn’t just extend to a list of tasks. I am grateful for the interactions I have with both people and places. So many things inspire me to feel grateful, and when I experience this, I shine.
Practicing gratitude at a personal level has been transformative for me. Acknowledging all the amazing things that surround me (even when they have been few) has been vital in building my self-esteem. More recently I have started practicing gratitude for the things in my life that have been harder and these are helping me to learn. And this is allowing me in turn, to let past traumas go.
And my tomorrow self is always grateful.
Map Point. What am I most grateful for?