Jump to content

What does gratitude mean to you?

Recommended Posts

When you go out and eat at a restaurant or at home (or where you happen to be), do you think about the efforts of those who made it possible for you to consume the food? Do you think of the people with families who work the low-paying jobs that crop/manage the food that potentially slaughter the animals that are sent on trucks that are delivered to the distributor, eventually making its way to the store/restaurant, which at the very end of the process, may be on your plate?


When you walk into your house/apartment, do you think of the efforts of those who cut, managed, and delivered the material that made it possible for the house/apartment to exist?


When sleeping in bed, do you think of the efforts of those who designed, produced, managed, and delivered the sheets, pillows and frame of the bed so that you do not sleep on the floor? Also, before sleeping, do you think of the people who designed, produced, and installed the locks on the doors so that you can sleep safer?


When shopping for clothes, do you think of the efforts of those who designed, produced, managed, and delivered them to the department store?


When taking the bus or driving a car, do you think of the efforts of those who designed, produced, and delivered the parts that were used to engineer the vehicle that was, at the very end of the process, available for you to use as a means of transportation?


When picking up a phone, do you think about the efforts of those who designed, produced, and managed the parts of the phone that were assembled into a complete product, which were sent to the factory/store that became available for you to purchase?


This is just the tip of the iceberg, so it is humbling to know that we have no reason to complain, when there are many people on this very planet who have never eaten at a restaurant, who don't have shelter, who don't have a bed to sleep on, who don't have a choice as to what they can wear every day, who don't have money to use public transportation or to buy a car, or and/or who have never talked to someone on a phone. This is certainly not to say that one should boycott everything, but being mindful of what went into everything that made it and makes it possible for you to live how you want to live is something very valuable.


The wave ripples go far beyond the view of the naked eye.


Be well.

Link to comment

For some odd reason, i thought about this question as well last night. I was thinking in my bed how I have a comfortable place to sleep and a quiet environment to sleep in.


Gratitude just disappears within a couple seconds after thinking about it though... Next morning I wake up with stress cause there are too many things that I have to get done but felt like I've procrastinated. Maybe I should think about gratitude on a consistent basis so it'll help increase the duration.

Link to comment

Rather than contemplating on all of that every single day and just "feeling" gratitude, I accept that I cannot realistically show gratitude for every single facet of my existence - and if I did it would be watered down as a function of time. So, I live from the perspective of gratitude which means I regularly look for opportunities and take opportunities to give back as a way of showing gratitude. And, I also regularly (usually silently!) say thanks - often to god but not always, for simple gifts. But I prefer action to thinking as a way of expressing gratitude.


Focusing on the horribly high numbers of homeless people doesn't do much even if you were to do it all day; spending an hour or two mentoring inner city teenagers or tutoring a homeless child in reading is a much more productive way, in my humble opinion.


And, there is of course a part of me that does not feel the need to single out the busdriver, waitstaff, the cashier, other service people etc where I am from- because they get paid to do the work they do, and where I live there are opportunities to make more $/get a better, more fulfilling job through training, education, persevearance, whatever. Having said that obviously I tip generously when the service is good but since they are paid to do their job, there's a limit to how much "gratitude" I will feel.


I also serve people as part of my job - and have been in service related industries for many years. I don't expect gratitude - my "thank you" is my paycheck first and foremost. Same thing when I volunteer - I do like the appreciation I get, sure, but that's not "why" I do it nor do I expect people to focus on the effort I put in to travel to the volunteer site, work there, travel home, etc.

Link to comment


This topic is now archived and is closed to further replies.

  • Create New...