When I first realized I was a codependent, one of the things that I began to understand was that I lived my life playing the victim. Everything was always happening TO me, people were always doing harm to me, and I was completely innocent, and the list could go on forever. I victimized myself, and I wallowed in every bad emotion I had. Doing this made me lose sight of the good things in life.
Today, I’d like everyone to grab a pen and paper so that we can make gratitude lists. This is one of the tools that helps me feel good about myself and my life, and it helped reframe the misery I was putting myself in.
When I was miserable and wallowing in self-pity and self-loathing, everything seemed like a direct attack on me, and everything was going to ruin my life. There was no getting over something or moving on from it. There was no silver lining. Creating a gratitude list has required me to look for the silver lining in every situation, and to see that even though really negative shit happens in our life, it is how we perceive it that makes the difference.
Start making your gratitude list now, and see if you can’t add to it a bit during the day. Before you go to sleep tonight, finish adding whatever you would like. Read it aloud to yourself, or to a friend if you have one you feel comfortable doing so with.
Don’t be afraid to add “bad” things to your list. For example, maybe you missed your bus and were frustrated early on, and then later in the day something happened that made you realize you were supposed to miss that bus. Even if you did just miss your bus, and you were late with nothing to make up for it later…add it to your list! You may not be grateful for it now, but just adding it to the list can attach positive emotions to it and make you feel better about it!
“If you want to find happiness, find gratitude.”- Steve Maraboli