Similarly, from a distance, my neighbours’ car appears to be cleaner and better kept, their dog well trained and their children more conscientious. My neighbour’s job appears to be a dream job, his boss an angel and his colleagues friendly and supportive.
While a visit to my neighbour’s lawn may dispel the ‘green grass’ illusion, (or it may confirm it), a visit to his office may not be so fruitful. They may indeed appear to be nice people to a stranger. Only if I get too curious and join my neighbour’s company, will I find out the truth – perhaps a little too late.
My garden is unique and beautiful (MGIUAB)
The fact that we have moved from the term ‘Grass’ to ‘Garden’, expands the perspective from limited one-item focus to the multiple blessings in our garden – including flowers, hedges, trees, bushes, pavements and the whole spectrum of goodies in an outdoor settings. It also adds an element of uniqueness – thereby precluding the need for any comparison. This opens up a multitude of reasons to count our blessings and be thankful. MGIUAB is an empowering state and indicates a mindset characterized by gratitude, knowing that you, your job, your house and your family – in fact everything that matters to you is pretty awesome – just the way it should be. Of course it doesn’t mean that things can’t be better. Everything can be improved with effort and application, but there is no real need to compare it with others – now or at any time.
Cultivate the habit of being grateful for every good thing that comes to you, and to give thanks continuously. And because all things have contributed to your advancement, you should include all things in your gratitude.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
Expressing gratitude calms the emotions, brings us into harmony and is good for the heart and soul. Expressing gratitude opens many doors to happiness, serenity and good health.
Sometimes we give thanks in our heart – very quietly. Another effective way to feel a sense of gratitude is to change our focus towards the positive things around us. A keen awareness of the wonderful things that happen in our life ensures that we’ll continue to receive more of what we value.
Benefits of being in gratitude are numerous, some of which are listed below:
- Genuine happiness
- Feeling more connected (less lonely)
- Stronger immune system
- Improved emotional equilibrium
- Better sleep
- Increased energy
- More confidence in ourselves
- Deeper relaxation
- We become more attractive
- Increased creativity
- Easier bounce back from difficulty
The MGIUAB state brings out three elements to the surface:
- One is the need to be thankful for all the good things that we have been bestowed with. And there is plenty to be thankful for – from having a family to having a roof over our heads, from our prized possessions to the food we eat, from the (almost) free goods like water and air to the highly advanced gadgetry which we buy at a high price – there is so much to be thankful for.
- Second is the acknowledgement that other people may also have their own successes and achievements. In this positive state, we are able to be happy about their achievements and wish them luck, rather than sink into a negative state of jealousy. Another possibility this state offers is our being able to learn from their achievements.
- Third is the realization that in watering, mowing and weeding our lawn regularly, we have the power to make it greener and more attractive – highlighting the positive action of developing ourselves, getting on top of our professional expertise, continuously improving the quality of our surroundings – rather than doing nothing but comparing and complaining.
Shift in Perspective:
A shift in perspective from GIGOTOS to MGIUAB moves you from a disempowering state to an empowering one – moving from a position of negativity and inaction to a positive state of graciousness, gratitude and proactive resolve for moving ahead.
At an individual level, we need to be on guard and be aware of the possibility of finding ourselves trapped in the disempowering GIGOTOS frame of mind. This self-awareness then prompts us to avoid this trap and instead step into the MGIUAB state. In this chosen state, rather than being jealous, we graciously acknowledge the good things our neighbours and colleagues are blessed with. A positive outlook may also lead us to learn from them.
More importantly, this awareness leads us to be truly grateful for our own gifts – some of which we have earned after untiring efforts – and others, which have been gifted to us. This empowering state frees us from the burden of negative emotions. It leads us to experience the positive impact of gratitude. It also activates us to make necessary efforts to improve our state of affairs from good to great.