How Anxiety Made Me More Grateful

Fighting anxiety is not an easy feat. If you are fighting it on daily basis then you are way stronger than you give yourself credit for. The racing thoughts, awful scenarios, and worst outcomes are constantly in your head. Even the simplest of tasks seem like climbing a mountain. Then how can gratitude and anxiety exist side-by-side? This may sound crazy. But it is one of the most valuable lessons that I learned in the previous year.

I have been fighting anxiety for approximately 5 years and I am now better equipped to handle it. The past year was a tough one due to COVID-19 and lockdown which did worsen my anxiety. It took a lot more effort to rationalize my negative thoughts and to calm the rising storm in my head.

Long story short, it wasn’t easy but it made me realize the blessings in my life. Every time when my mind supplied 100 ways how any scenario could go sideways, I tried to rationalize. This is when it hit me that the situation could have been a lot worse but it went well. And I am grateful for that.

We often are stuck upon lost opportunities and negative experiences to appreciate what we have. We are so busy worrying about the past and future that we fail to live in the present moment. The present is often taken for granted.

An attitude of Gratitude can create wonders in life and help fight anxiety.
Expressing Gratitude

Living in the present moment will make us more grateful for what we have right now. The moment where you are taking a stroll, drinking hot chocolate, reading your favorite book, watching the movie, or simply lazing around is a priceless moment that is a treasure in itself. Capture such moments in the frame of your heart as there is no guarantee for the future.

Gratitude will help you appreciate the beauty of NOW. It will make you understand that although the future is uncertain, the present is in your hands. It is here for you. You can spend it worrying about the future and past. Or you can appreciate it as a gift and enjoy living the moment.

Practicing gratitude will attract more positive energy. Once you start being more grateful, you will start observing positive changes in your life, and doors for more opportunities will open. It is not like gratitude will bring miracles. But it means that if you are grateful then you will start seeing more chances rather than problems.

An attitude of gratitude will make it a lot easier for you to navigate the storms of life. It will help you fight the external and internal world demons. Most self-help books and coaches also emphasized on being grateful. Most of the people who achieved heights of success in their lives were not complainers. They faced many hurdles in their life yet kept an optimistic approach instead of complaining. They appreciated what they had and used the limited available sources in their road to success.

So next time when negative thoughts overwhelm you, rationalize them. And when everything turns out to be ok, take a moment to appreciate that it could have gone sideways but it didn’t. Be grateful and you will soon start seeing positive changes in your life. These changes will be subtle yet will help you in the long-run.

“Walk as if you are kissing the Earth with your feet.”

― Thich Nhat Hanh, Peace Is Every Step: The Path of Mindfulness in Everyday Life

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