Grateful For Gratitude – By @mcgloiiiiiin

Grateful For Gratitude

I’ve been practicing gratitude (or attempting to) on and off for the last five months since Marc first banged on about it at the start of term 1. As a ‘mood challenged’ individual, I am probably a more difficult person to reform than the average. Being pessimistic and ruminating on the negatives comes a little too easy to me. However, making a mindful change has never been more necessary, whilst enrolled on a course that demands so much of you, during a time where you get so little from life. By the way, I’m not actually as miserable as I look, my face is just set that way.

I think I have spent a lot of my life doing the opposite of the gratitude process, looking out for things that are negative, and ruminating on them. I tell myself that I do this because I like to solve problems and always want to fix things but that’s just an easy excuse. To justify my loathing default nature and admit it is problematic means I have to take responsibility for a personal failure. That means I am flawed, even more flawed than I already know I am (ironically, I never saw this mindset as a problem that needs to be solved). 

My name is John McGloin and I have a problem. I am ungrateful.

There. I said it. Breakthrough.

I remember reading in the past about CBT, which incorporates aspects of gratitude, and how what you think changes how you feel, I think I dismissed it as pop-science when I was younger. I guess I should be grateful now for realising how wrong I was. It feels good to be wrong. This strange mix of guilt and triumph…is this what growth feels like? 

I’ve been in a bit of a slump recently. I haven’t been pushing as hard as I could be, I’ve been gliding rather than soaring, for numerous reasons. These little day-to-day noted blessings give you resilience, they help break you out of the apathy and malaise, and counteract the negatives that assault you. I thought I’d take a moment to collect some key points from my journal that I consider to be important and things I hadn’t considered before. 

In no particular order:

  • The beauty of audio effects as taught by Rob
  • The ability to still do some art
  • A great cocktail (Boulevardier)
  • Having direction and purpose again
  • The wisdom of elders
  • The delightful busker lady on the highstreet
  • Having friends
  • Outrageously decent food from all around the bloody world, available whenever you bloody want it
  • Finding a mask in your jacket pocket when you forgot to bring one out and want to pop in a shop
  • Classmates expressing enjoyment in my work
  • Learning that I can be a bit annoying and controlling, and need to let people chill, handle it, and enjoy the process
  • The sheer amount of inspirational talent I share a room with at the school (physically and digitally)
  • I have heating
  • I laughed so hard a little bit of snot came out
  • I had a very loving Grandma who taught me what love is
  • Jacob Large
  • The little patches of blue within a grey sky that remind you it will be nice again
  • My dodgy ankle seems to be less dodgy
  • My dodgy bowels seem to be less dodgy
  • A genuine apology
  • The satisfaction of getting rid of an in-growing beard hair
  • Past failures
  • The pink to blue gradient of a cloudless, late-winter sunset
  • I live in an area where there are interesting things hidden in plain sight (the Camberwell Bunker)
  • Elif in general, she is wonderful
  • My Dad being happier and more compassionate as he grows older
  • Freshly baked crusty rolls
  • The family of foxes in our garden that jump on our trampoline
  • Second chances
  • Unexpected morning snow

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