Who Are You Taking For Granted?

Are you missing someone who is not around today? Are you thinking about getting something new and shiny? Basically is there anything you are thinking about that you would like to acquire or would like to be given back to you? Are you noticing what you have?

pyrolatry by Jenny Downing

I often find myself thinking about things I'd like to have and forgetting about the things that I have. There are things or people in our lives that we take for granted. I think it's human nature to always desire more, to always require more, to always demand more, to want what we don't have or cannot have. We tend to appreciate what's missing more than what's present. It's like our contentment is hinged upon the next thing that we can get our hands on and not the thing we already have. It's a vicious cycle which reminds me of the saying that a bird in hand is worth two in the bush.

This posture of always wanting more and not appreciating what is right in front of us can be destructive. Specifically when you think about relationships, it is usually a lack of appreciation for our partners that leads to destructive behavior. The mind set that the grass could be greener elsewhere causes people to do stupid things that leave a world of hurt to the people that care about us the most. Hindsight being twenty twenty doesn't help the case much. This is something I struggle with all the time.

I find myself thinking about what's not being done rather than what has been done or is being done. Do you do this? Do you point out the things that haven't been checked off on your to do list or what you think is due to you as opposed to assuming a posture of gratitude for the various things your partner does for you. I hate that I find myself doing this, its such a selfish attitude and I always tend to think I am better than that. Have you ever heard someone complaining about their partner and how little they contribute in the relationship? It has such a bitter connotation to it. The thing is unless you are with a complete dead bit often our partners go out on a limb for us. They do things they don't have to for us and over time we start to expect it and take it for granted. Then the complaining beginnings about their short comings when really if they stopped doing half of what they do the 'ball' would literally crush to the ground.

On another tangent, lately I have been thinking about my father and how much I miss him. We build shrines for the people who have left us in our lives. Whether they died or they chose not to be in our lives, we build this monuments for them in our lives and we are so consumed with the memories of them we don't appreciate the living or those that are around us. I looked at my mother the other day and was struck by how much she does for me. How she will stop at nothing to make sure I have what I need when I am a grown woman so to speak : ). I am no longer a child, she has done her duty by me, she is not required to support me anymore. And yet she does. Sometimes I forget to appreciate her, this makes me so sad.

It's very easy to fall into a pattern of ingratitude and disregard for the people around us and the things that we do have. It's easier to look at the shiny object that we don't have and not notice the shiny thing that we do have that has grown dull because we have grown accustomed to it. Have you looked at your partner lately and noticed how beautiful they look after all this time? Have you looked at them and seen the role that they play and just been awed by their generosity? Or are you always seeing their lack? Always hinting on things they could do better instead of just appreciating?

Pause today and think of the things you take for granted. Start appreciating what's around you. The people around you and the things that you have. Thank the people who go out of their way for you because remember they don't have to. They really don't. End this cycle of acquiring things you don't need and start saving up for things that matter.

Listening is loving...

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