Reflections

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  1. Robin Ann

    Yes for sure, living with gratefulness and my faith! Most of my fear is for my daughter’s safety and well being but I also worry about many friends and loved ones. It is my nature. Practicing gratefulness allows me and helps me to focus on what is good. Helps me refocus on what I need to. Reminds me to take a pause to reflect & hopefully redirect my dreadful thoughts! Thank you for this question!

    2 months ago
  2. Dolores Kazanjian

    The gratefulness practice has reminded me to be grateful for the miracle that life is and for each breath I take This helps me not to dwell on fear of dying.

    2 months ago
  3. Don Jones

    Gratitude brings light. Fear lives in the shadows always looking for opportunities to pounce. So, the extra light pushes the darkness further away. The brighter the light, the less it comes to mind.

    2 months ago
  4. C
    Carissa Thomas

    Yes, when I practice gratitude and mindfulness, it teaches me to be resilient and see the positives in any circumstance. Not necessarily toxic positivity, but a sense that even in the worst times, I have hope, and know that everything is temporary. It makes me braver to try new things, because it’s helped me cultivate a resilient mindset.

    2 months ago
    1. Avril

      This too shall pass…

      2 months ago
  5. Charlie T

    Yes, definitely. Practicing gratitude helps
    me to see things as they are. It helps to
    remind me that there are positive
    outcomes as well as negative outcomes.
    It’s easy for me to only see the negative
    and to fear change. Stopping and
    considering the possible positive
    outcomes, has helped me live with less
    fear.

    2 months ago
    1. L
      Loc Tran

      Charlie T., I’ve been down that road before. Having an optimistic mother helps. She’s all about opportunities, so it balances things out. My wife and I bounce ideas off one another. She told me about her reaching out a few weeks ago to help her become more confident in social settings. You were one of the people who reached out and gave her some useful advice. I’ve done the same thing before. Talking about ourselves is addicting. There’s a great deal of pleasure that comes with feeling validated and understood. I started to take the time to comment on other people’s posts more whether it’s here or Facebook. It’s paid off greatly beyond myself. My wife has certainly taken noticed and done the same. Her attitude has improved night and day. When she replies to others or sees me doing it, she still thanks you even to this day.

      2 months ago
  6. Barb C

    I wasn’t particularly fearful when I found this site, so no, not really. My mom called it borrowing trouble when I would anticipate things that could go wrong and encouraged me not to do that. When my life was more precarious I worried more, as a divorced mom with two toddlers eating a lot of ramen and turning the heat down when they were with their dad. But even then I wouldn’t describe myself as fearful. I had a confidence that we would come through and things would work out. (I now hear a certain song from “Annie” in my head….)

    I recognize privilege in my answer. Whatever fears I’ve had over the years for myself have been because I’m a woman; some places, people or situations don’t feel safe. I’m generally open and kind (again, thanks to Mom’s example) so those feelings don’t come from stereotyping people, more from trusting my gut. As a white cis woman with no visible disabilities and a native speaker of English I can move through the world with less fear than those who will be treated differently for the way they look or sound. I can’t feel “grateful” for that until everyone has the same ability to move through the world without fear.

    There’s one way in which the statement is true: I’m more able to reconcile my immediate comforts, happiness, enjoyment of beauty in the world with the larger existential crises we face as a species. The world will be no less beautiful if I consciously fear the effects of climate change and every other thing that’s wrong. I can appreciate the good things and have those moments of gratefulness. I’ve mentioned my poetry reading and I know I’ve read a couple of poems that capture this dichotomy; if I find them I’ll post them later.

    2 months ago
    1. Robin Ann

      Working with many different cultures I hear their fears (their stories) as you describe. We all need to be mindful of that. Thanks for writing about it!

      2 months ago
    2. S
      Ana Maria

      Beautiful!! and powerful! I thank you!

      2 months ago
    3. Avril

      I appreciate you and your insight Barb

      2 months ago
  7. Yram

    With the practice of living gratefully, I have become more aware of what I have than don’t, so I think that puts me in abundance not scarcity. Because of that thinking, I tend to be less fearful.

    2 months ago
  8. Ngoc Nguyen

    Living gratefully doesn’t make me less fearful. It moves me to encounter fearfulness from a different perspective and adopt it as an opportunity for self-training.

    2 months ago
    1. L
      Loc Tran

      Yes. It’s easy to see the negative outcomes first. It’s like making a hot dog without the bottom bun. It only gets us no where. When we see the positive possibilities first, we get the complete hot dog. The negative outcomes feel lighter. Paranoia reduces.

      2 months ago
    2. Barb C

      Wonderful response, Ngoc.

      2 months ago
  9. Butterfly

    I have always been a very anxious person. It’s part of my personality. Learning to meditate was the breakthrough to feeling and being much calmer. Gratefulness is certainly is an extra dimension which enhances my calmer state. It’s the reminder that there are people looking out for me, I am not alone, and I never have to face anything entirely alone even if it is strangers that I need to turn to in a crisis and for that I am grateful.

    2 months ago
    1. Robin Ann

      Yes! Amen to living angels all around us!

      2 months ago
    2. L
      Loc Tran

      Butterfly, I’ve noticed my mind relaxing when I meditate too. It helps me be more confident and creative.

      2 months ago
  10. sunnypatti

    I want to rely on God, but I’m still human and the ego is hard to hush sometimes. My gratitude practice helps ease the tension, but I still deal with plenty of fear and anxiety.

    2 months ago
  11. Carol

    Living gratefully helps me to better cope with fear when it rears its head.

    2 months ago
    1. L
      Loc Tran

      Carol, This website can help with coping strategies, and I’m glad it’s benefitted you.

      2 months ago
  12. Joseph McCann

    I have never been much of a fraidy cat. Thank goodness. The notion of gratitude and living gratefully has helped me to calm my mind and accept life on life’s terms and to fully appreciate the beauty that surrounds all of us human beings.

    2 months ago
  13. Michele

    Living gratefully has not made me less fearful. I am a worrier. I still have fears. I do focus more on being Present though. I try to be grateful and positive every day.

    2 months ago
    1. Don Jones

      Maybe worry isn’t the right word. Perhaps you just have an abundance of care.

      2 months ago
      1. Michele

        Thank you Don – I like your perspective ‘abundance of care’

        2 months ago
      2. Robin Ann

        Very true!

        2 months ago
    2. Joseph McCann

      A positive outlook can make or break my day. I choose the former. Thank you for the reminder of the power of positivity Michele.

      2 months ago
  14. Avril

    I concur with the old praise and worship song, “I feel the fear and do it anyway!” Anxiety and fear are natural responses to potentially unknown and unwelcome or dangerous situations—all humans have these emotions. Even trained elite combatants. These emotions are useful in the right place and at the right time. The issue is when our lives are dictated by these feelings which should be temporary informants not roommates. Of course, I feel fear—I wouldn’t want to be fearless. Like many others I have had anxiety as too close of a companion. I don’t shame myself for getting stuck in that loop. I am much more skilled at letting it go now. Gratitude and my other practices (meditation, contemplation, prayer, Qi Gong, and others) often give me enough insight to understand the fear is egocentric and not because of mortal danger. Sometimes I am still afraid and then I practice self-compassion. I am definitely a work in progress.

    2 months ago
    1. Robin Ann

      We all are a work in progress! I think of fight or flight when I read what you wrote. It is a natural response to what we feel is danger or out of our comfort zone! Thanks for your thoughts.

      2 months ago
    2. Carol

      Yes, the fear is so often egocentric. There’s a recently published children’s book called “Unstoppable Us: How Humans Took Over the World” by Yuval N. Harari that addresses our egocentric fears. I found it at the public library. It’s a quick read and I personally think every adult could benefit from reading it!

      2 months ago
      1. Avril

        I’ll see if I can find it on Libby.

        2 months ago
        1. Carol

          Avril I hope the illustrations play well on Libby…some of them are very informative.

          2 months ago
    3. Joseph McCann

      “……..these feelings which should be temporary informants not roommates.” I will remember that line Avril. Thanks.

      2 months ago
      1. Dolores Kazanjian

        Reminds me of a quote I read from a Buddhist teacher: “Have the thoughts, but don’t invite them in for tea”

        2 months ago
      2. Avril

        Thank Joseph—I must admit I am probably inspired by Rumi’s “The Guesthouse.” This poem informs my views on emotions. https://grateful.org/resource/guest-house-rumi/

        This being human is a guest house.
        Every morning a new arrival.

        A joy, a depression, a meanness,
        some momentary awareness comes
        as an unexpected visitor.

        Welcome and entertain them all!
        Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,
        who violently sweep your house
        empty of its furniture,
        still, treat each guest honorably.
        He may be clearing you out
        for some new delight.

        The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
        meet them at the door laughing,
        and invite them in.

        Be grateful for whoever comes,
        because each has been sent
        as a guide from beyond.

        2 months ago
        1. Butterfly

          Thank you, Avril 🥰

          2 months ago
        2. Yram

          That poem is one of my favorites. Thank you for reminding me!

          2 months ago
          1. Avril

            Mine, too

            2 months ago
        3. Ngoc Nguyen

          Avril, thank you so much for introduced the poem.
          I love this. Especially:
          “The dark thought, the shame, the malice,
          meet them at the door laughing,
          and invite them in.Be grateful for whoever comes,
          because each has been sent
          as a guide from beyond.”
          Have a nice day, all!

          2 months ago
          1. Avril

            I’m glad you enjoyed it

            2 months ago
        4. Josie

          One of my favorite poetic informants, too. Thanks, Avril.

          2 months ago
          1. Avril

            Very clever!

            2 months ago
  15. Laura

    Fears still crop up, but a grateful perspective loosens their grip on me. Gratefulness supplies a counterweight to fears and difficulties.

    2 months ago
    1. Carol

      “Gratefulness supplies a counterweight to fears and difficulties.” Laura, I know I will be quoting you often. Such a wise and powerful insight.

      2 months ago
    2. Avril

      Well said, nice and succinct.

      2 months ago
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