If the pain you experience robs you of joy, it will be the practice of gratitude that returns it.

When connection is severed. Heartache, palpable. Grief, asphyxiating. Fear, consuming. Regret, crippling. Existence, a black hole.

Gratitude will be the way by which you find you are powerful again. Every moment spent in thanks, another stepping stone out of the hollow is laid.

Each of us has dark moments, demonic sides, shame stories, and fears so powerful we spend our whole lives avoiding a complete thought about them in hopes it keeps them from happening.

For those of us who have experienced “worst case scenario” (sometimes more than once), the hollow only deepens. We know the cruel edges of life’s bitter, wicked truth.

So, how do we keep living? What will pull us from the shadows and into the light of loving again, believing for good, hoping once again, finding peace?

Gratitude.

There is more power in gratefulness than a thousand logical reasonings. When you position yourself to look for things to be thankful for, you not only shift your focus, you change your energy and the direction of your intention.

Practicing gratitude adjusts core beliefs, bypassing the body, the mind, the heart. Gratitude shakes your soul and the result is a shift in energy, perspective, and beliefs about yourself and the world you live in.

Radical gratitude can be as powerful as being in love, achieving a lifelong goal, or overcoming a difficult challenge–only you have ALL the power and it only takes SECONDS to accomplish.

A powerless human is a susceptible human. Lacking power will leave you vulnerable to experiencing emotional beatings, a lifetime of regret, and agonizing restlessness.

If you need power, control, direction, vision, advice, answers… start practicing gratitude.

Every morning and before you close your eyes to sleep at night, think of three things you’re grateful for. Keep a gratitude journal. Set reminders on your phone. Be purposeful. Follow through. And keep doing it.

Brick by brick, step by step, you’ll see you had every bit of strength you needed to pull yourself out of the hollow threatening to swallow you up right there inside of you all along.

There. You have a new tool when storms roll in. Let the black clouds of pain be your new cue: time to GO GRATEFUL.

Keep breathing, beautiful people. You’re worth every bit of beauty and goodness life can offer just because you’re alive.

I’m thankful for your life and mine today.

XO,

MK

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