Setting the intention and our state for the day before starting work can be powerful. It can help us be more mindful during the day and be ready to recognise and see the truth in each situation rather than simply reacting to them.
The truth in each situation to me means seeing the situation for what it actually is rather than what we want it to be. In other words, the truth is not yet distorted by our “filter” or ego.
In Chapter 6, Howells (2012) gives some practical tips for practicing gratitude. One which stood out for me was this idea of “state of preparedness”. If one was trying to incorporate gratitude into their being, rather than needing to decide to be grateful towards each person you meet in your day (and then maybe complaining about them behind their back later if you don’t actually like them), try instead to choose your “inner attitude of gratitude” for the day. This may predispose you to be naturally ready and “prepared to recognise goodness and be grateful for it”.
To recognise goodness is linked to being present to each interaction you have in moment. For example, when you interact with someone you don’t really get along well with, if you are in the moment, it means you are more likely to set aside your ego and listen to what they have to say; you aren’t thinking about the negative things about them in your head while you are pretending to listen. And listening is so important, because it’s not about you but about the other. It could be considered a gift, because the greatest gift you can give is your time, because time unlike money, is non-renewable (at least in this physical dimension).
I’ll aim to incorporate this idea of a state of preparedness in my morning journaling to make it more effective. I recognised that my morning journaling as my way of getting into a state of preparedness without realising it, but now I have more reasons to make sure I do it every day! I’ll also add to my morning meditation to visualise feeling gratitude to either memories I’m already naturally grateful for or for potential future scenarios where I can recognise goodness.
Howells, K. (2012) Gratitude in Education.