There is never just one experience, one world, one physical reality. Just like there is never just one perspective.
Each of us experiences their own layer, or plane, of the physical world and yes, each of us has the ability to choose the layer.
It’s a skill, a habit — often as simple as any other — which we all possess. Yet somehow we tend to forget our own power, our ability to choose.
The key, then, is to remember. Remember that we are in control, that even when things could be better we can still choose the best attitude.
Choose to focus on the good bits and to ignore the bad bits and you’re halfway there. Happiness doesn’t need to be complicated.
What you focus on grows
We live in an ever-changing impermanent universe, which means everything is destined to die sooner or later.
Unless it gets nourishment or makes copies of itself. We see this in the physical world, from viruses, to the animal kingdom, to the human race.
We have been on this planet for hundreds of thousands of years because our species has managed to survive (get nourishment) and reproduce.
Now, here’s where it gets interesting: you can apply this principle to the mental world as well — the images and thoughts in your mind.
- Think a positive thought with enough intensity and you give it nourishment, and it grows
- Think a positive thought enough times and it turns into a pattern, or habit, which means it makes copies of itself
By the same token, ignore anything that causes anxiety, stress, etc. (don’t dwell on it, let go of it) and eventually it dies.
You have the power to decide what should grow and what should disappear in your own layer of the world, so just decide!
There’s always something to be thankful for
There is a little secret to improve your mental health/mood almost instantly (and permanently, once you turn it into a habit).
It has nothing to do with self-help books or meditation. It’s not something you’d need a prescription for. And it literally doesn’t cost you anything.
The trick is… to be thankful. That’s it — not much of a secret. But we often overlook it, we think it “can’t be that easy”.
Just like some overreact to anything purely because it’s turned into a habit, just like the pessimist sees the bad bits in everything on autopilot…
Just like some self-sabotage because of their own negative self-image, just like insecure people tend to attract manipulators then wonder “why me”…
By the same token, you can turn gratitude and the tendency to focus on the good into habit until it’s subconscious.
It’s a conscious decision only at first. Then after a month, two months, a year it becomes subconscious, it becomes part of you.
Choose to be thankful
Once you consciously decide to look for the positive and see the positive around you, your own layer of the world will change.
There’s always something to be thankful for, and you’ll find that the more you are thankful, the more life gives you reasons to be thankful.
Focus on the good and it grows, and you get more of it — sometimes it’s subtle, sometimes it’s almost miraculous.
Law of attraction? Mysticism? Principle of Correspondence? Maybe. But at the end of the day it’s basic psychology.
No living being is ever capable of perceiving the world objectively. We never actually see the world “as it is”, but rather our own view.
Therefore, choose the best view. Choose to be grateful. Choose to be thankful.
13 random things to be thankful for
- A starry sky on a summer night
- Plants, trees, Mother Nature
- Your favorite skin care products
- Big, clean, comfortable beds
- Your past and your future
- Those who love and support you
- Psychology and spirituality
- Freedom and freedom of choice
- Dreams and the subconscious
- Funny pictures/videos/jokes
- Your personality and strengths
- Random acts of kindness
- Ineffable emotions
I wrote a list of a hundred things to be thankful for a while ago, you can have a look at it here.
Always be thankful quotes
What a precious privilege to be alive — to breathe, to think, to enjoy, to love.Marcus Aurelius
The more you praise and celebrate your life, the more there is in life to celebrate.Oprah Winfrey
He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.Epictetus
There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though everything is a miracle. The other is as though nothing is.Unknown
The miracle of gratitude is that it shifts your perception to such an extent that it changes the world you see.Robert Holden
Remember that what you have now was once among the things you hoped for.Epicurus
It’s not happiness that brings us gratitude. It’s gratitude that brings us happiness.Unknown
Appreciation is the highest form of prayer, for it acknowledges the presence of good wherever you shine the light of your thankful thoughts.Alan Cohen
Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.J. Alphonse Karr
Reflect upon your present blessings — of which every man has many — not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.Charles Dickens
Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, ever have enough.Oprah Winfrey