Thoughtful Thursday – Jung on Gratitude

thoughtfulCarl Jung said a few things about gratitude when he was alive that really speak to me. One of the more poignant in my life right now is, “Be grateful for your difficulties and challenges, for they hold blessings. In fact… Man needs difficulties; they are necessary for health personal growth, individuation and self-actualisation.”

It has been feeling difficult lately and it has partly been because I’ve been a bit disorganized. That’s not usually me. A few months back, I decided to separate my home task list from my writing and work task list. I thought it was a fantastic idea to be MORE organized. It turns out, I prefer to see everything in one list. It’s easier for me to deal with it all in one convenient place. Not that it was inconvenient as I use KanbanFlow and it’s easy enough to switch between lists, but I can prioritize it all better in one rather than flipping between them.

Anyway, hopefully this period of challenge is leading to something amazing. Right now, I feel rather like I’m in the same place I was before I went back to school only I am more equipped to write the pieces I want to write. But I’m not any further ahead in learning French. I have Fridays blocked off partly for self-study in that area, so hopefully I’ll improve enough, so I won’t be completely useless for a job that needs it.

Jung also said, “If our religion is based on salvation, our chief emotions will be fear and trembling. If our religion is based on wonder, our chief emotion will be gratitude.”

What if we replaced the word religion with something else? Let’s put life there instead. If our life is based on salvation, if we wait for others to save us, it will be full of fear. If we look at the world in wonder, it will be full of gratitude. I like that much better.

And it can be hard to be grateful sometimes. When you’re unemployed and you’re behind on your chores and your neck is acting up so much you want to refer to it as several other parts of the human anatomy, it’s easy to forget about the things you do have.

I have a really good emotional support system. People who care about me. And that means more to me than money ever will.

I’ll leave you with this other thing he said, “The word ‘happiness’ would lose its meaning if it were not balanced and contrasted and compared to sadness. In comparing how an experience could have been worse we develop gratitude and happiness, while if we compare it how it could have been better we develop bitterness and sadness.”

R~

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