Sometimes, we have to dig deep to find something to be grateful for in a situation we do not like. If we decide to, we can usually find something to be grateful for in any situation.
For example, my neighbors have wind chimes that hang along the side of their house that faces my house. They may look pretty but I do not enjoy wind chimes when they chime.
I tend to be sensitive to noise and they can keep me awake on windy nights. Or I feel like they are all I can hear when I’m trying to concentrate on a project. I admit that I have hoped for them to blow away when it’s extremely windy.
My neighborhood does not have any rules against wind chimes and I like my neighbors. I’ve complained about them to friends and family but I’ve never talked to my neighbors about them. I don’t want to be the crabby neighbor!
Being Grateful using a List
One day, I decided to stop focusing on how much I did not like them. I challenged myself to find things to be grateful regarding the wind chimes:
* I can hear the wind chimes. Each chime is a reminder that my hearing is working just fine.
* It could be worse. They only have 3 sets of chimes.
* Since the chimes were initially hung up, the neighbors had a wood fence built between our houses. The fence has dampened the sound of the chimes.
* It’s not windy every day! Many days I never hear them.
* The design of one set of chimes includes cardinals. The cardinals remind me of my grandma.
* The noise from the neighbors could be much worse. Besides the dog that barks when it wants in, I’ve never heard any other noise from them. No loud music. No super loud TV. No late night parties. They are very nice neighbors
* A wind chime next door is better than a smoker who smokes outside, close enough for the smoke to drift in my open windows. Note: I’m not judging people that choose to smoke. That’s their choice, but I really do not want to smell smoke in my house when I don’t smoke myself.
By focusing on this gratitude list instead of how annoying the chimes are, I do not notice them as much anymore. My choice has made all the difference.
Now when I hear them chime I use it has a reminder to be grateful for something. Anything I can think of at the time. My husband, good food, a house that protects me from the same wind that makes the chimes chime, something I’ve written in my 5 Minute Journal, etc.
A chime that was once annoying has become a reminder to be grateful in all situations.
If you are having a difficult time being grateful, I encourage you to make a list. What you discover my surprise and change you like it did me! If you’ve done this before, share your story in a comment below!