Do you, or someone that you love, tend to be a glass-half-empty kind of human? Maybe there tends to be a lot of complaining, of focus on the things that go wrong, rather than what is going right?
Did you know that are brains are hard-wired to look more for the negative (or in the very far past be always on alert for danger in the forms of things that will hurt us), than they are for the positive?
The science of positive psychology has proven that we can re-wire ourselves to be more optimistic. One of the keys to this is gratitude.
I call it the Gratitude Game when I am caring for my elderly mother, who honestly, has a lot to be discouraged about. So much has physically and cognitively been taken from her by Parkinson’s disease. We all know, though, that being around someone who stays stuck in the “what is wrong” can be very draining. So with my mother, I play this game and help her look for things to be grateful for. A warm house. That my Dad takes amazing care of her. Her children live close by.
A play this game myself when life gets tough. I’ve been playing it for awhile now, and I find that the science is true. I am much more resilient through the tough days, because even on the worst of them, I remind myself that there is so much to be grateful for.
You can start your own Gratitude Game at dinner tonight. Ask each family member about three things that happened to day that were good, and why they are good. You can start a Gratitude Jar with small slips of paper and family members can write down things they are grateful for. Open it New Year’s Eve or any other special time. We don’t have to practice gratitude only in the month of November. If we practice it all year long, the Gratitude Game will serve you well on the darkest days when you need to play it. https://conta.cc/3MvfpXc The Peter Pan Center