I grew up without a lot of stuff. My family was poor, but we did eat every day. Most days we had 3 meals even. I rarely had the latest and greatest toy, which is why I started working before I even went to high school. I wanted my own money for my own things. I think it is because of this that I learned to be grateful for what I have.
Over the years, though, that gratitude has dropped quite a bit. I appreciate what I have, but I want more. I need more. As my income increased, my need for “stuff” increased, and while I can recognize this, I do not know how to change it. I have enough stuff. I have too much stuff. How do I get back to not needing more?
I think part of my brain sees what others have and I do not want to miss out. I want to enjoy nights out. I want to buy frilly things. I want shiny objects. I want and I want, but I don’t need.
I tell myself that these things will help control my depression and lift my mood. In reality, though, I think it does the opposite. I have crowded my life with so much “stuff” that I do not have any time or room for the things that I need. I need interactions with people, but not too many. I need time to meditate and a clear space to do it. I need fun times with friends that are not expensive, but still enjoyable or even silly. These are the things that I need. But how do I make my gratitude recognize this?
What brings out the most gratitude in you?