gratitude list

Some Brief Thoughts About Gratitude

It's sort of customary this time of year for folks who write about recovery to do an article on gratitude. You can relax, though. This one will be short and sweet.

I like the the definition of gratitude in Psychology Today's “Psych Basics” series best:

“…an emotion expressing appreciation for what one has — as opposed to, say, a consumer-oriented emphasis on what one wants or needs.”

We don't get recovery by osmosis. I'm thankful that I worked hard on my sobriety, and grateful that I'm still sober. I'm thankful for the folks who encouraged and guided me, and grateful that many of them are still part of my life. I had a lot of help — but I did the work.

That's the point. Recovery is work, and if we don't put in the effort, it doesn't stick very well. So when we make our gratitude list, let's look at the present.  And if we don't have that much to be grateful for in our lives today, then maybe we need to work a little harder.