Tomi Jamal-Alayande on Gratitude
Intentional living

Cultivating a Heart of Gratitude

What has cultivating a heart of gratitude got to do with nursery rhymes? You are about to find out (Smiles).

It’s funny how that I didn’t like cartoons growing up but now, as a mum, I can sing several rhymes from Cocomelon.

One of such is 

I’m thankful for my teachers, I’m thankful for my friend

I’m thankful for the things I’ve got, the thank yous never end

What are you thankful for

What are you thankful for, what are you thankful for?”

There is a way it stops me in my tracks and makes me think.

If you ask me, I’d say that the rhyme is not for only toddlers even we adults need it.

Many times, we take for granted the very things that we should be grateful for. Life, health clothing food, shelter, work, peace are examples of experiences we take for granted perhaps because it is not yet at the level we desire forgetting that being alive and in good health or enjoying peace is so good and not just “the basic”.

Don’t be shocked that Not cultivating a heart of gratitude can be like a blindfold that hinders you from seeing the potential in anything around you. 

Why?

Ingratitude makes situations worse

Your ingratitude diverts your focus and attention to things you can not change. Also, away from the things you can change. 

Ingratitude blows things out of proportion, after all, Francessca Battistelli sang, In the middle of my little mess I forget how big I’m blessed.

One time, I had a misunderstanding with someone, I kept thinking about that situation and the more I thought about it, I saw the devil trying to poke holes at the person’s character and other scenarios giving me reasons to say, there is nothing good about the person and that nothing good about the relationship we shared.

I had to stop myself right there and reaffirm that it was just one scenario. I began to acknowledge the good the person had done in time past done and began to think with a heart of gratitude and appreciate God for the person.

At that moment, I began to feel my peace restored.

Gratitude is a game-changer, cultivate a heart of gratitude

When things are not seeming to go well, go in the mode of gratitude rather than complain and surely, you will soon see a way out. If you choose to complain, while it might seem like you are lashing out and will get temporary satisfaction, you stand a risk of making matters become worse or making negative declarations by complaining.

Ways to Cultivate a Heart of Gratitude

  1. Gratitude Journaling: Acknowledge moments of gratitude and write them down so you can always remember. I will share more on this in another blog post. For now, read a step-by-step guide to journaling and discover 10 benefits of journaling.
  2. Cultivate a grateful heart through the thoughts you entertain, listen to uplifting music and confessions
  3. Acknowledge you are God’s own and he has your best interests at heart especially when things don’t go in the direction you desire.

Conclusion

It is somewhat normal that things and situations will always get to you, but no matter what comes your way, remember that you are in control of your reactions. In a song by Minster Dunsin Oyekan, he says when you lose your joy, you have lost everything.

Selah

Thanks for reading, be sure to share ways you cultivate and practice gratitude. 

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5 Comments

    • EnthusiasticEniola

      Beautiful rhyme…and here’s a question everyone should often, if not always, ask ourselves: ” What am I thankful for?”

      I have come to accept that there’s always something or things to be thankful for and a good practice, one that I personally engage in, is meditating on the things we are grateful for not failing to acknowledge the One who blessed us with a heart of gratitude, and then believing that He will always be faithful.

      • Tomi Jamal-Alayande

        Beautiful words, Eniola. Being grateful will certainly help us acknowledge his faithfulness. Thank you for sharing.

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