Gratitude – You’ve probably heard numerous times to count your blessings. To have gratitude. Possibly even to list three things you’re grateful for each day.
Not bad advice, I would agree.
However, I want to challenge you to put a new spin on how you do this. I tried it for a while. It felt kind of silly saying I was grateful for a beautiful day for my son or some obvious thing. Stating the good things is nice. And I’m not saying it’s bad.
But learning to be grateful for the hard shit can change your life.
I’m also not saying this is easy. But I do believe when you find gratitude for the hard, sucky stuff your life shifts.
Especially as you recover from financial abuse. It’s hard not to be resentful and angry at the person who did this to you.
If you can flip it and see the blessing in it, you will really start to heal and to grow.
For example, I hate what happened in my marriage. But if I am grateful for how I’ve grown and learned since I left, I start letting go of the anger and resentment.
Think about it for a minute. Is life really meant to be just about happiness and good times? I think we’d all like it to be that way. Unfortunately, the reality is different. We all experience challenges and hard times. Learning how to cope with them and overcome them is the human experience.
Examine what has come out of your hardship, out of being financially abused. What can you find to be grateful for?
For me, I’m grateful for the opportunity to find myself. I’m grateful to find my path and for the love that we shared during the good times. Out of that love came my beautiful son. He has been an incredible gift that I will be eternally grateful for.
Without the financial abuse, I would not have had this opportunity to share with each of you the lessons I’ve learned as I’ve navigated my recovery. I would not be here fulfilling a calling that I believe the world needs. I am truly grateful that I am able to lead this movement, to bring all of us together. As a force, we can make changes that are long overdue.
When you flip your hardships and find gratitude in them, your energy is freed up. You will likely find peace.
Let go and find appreciation for the sticky parts of life. This will enhance your ability to move forward in a more meaningful way than staying stuck on them.
Being grateful for the good stuff is all well and good, and I’m not saying don’t appreciate the blessings. I am suggesting that there is more growth and change possible when you find gratitude for the parts that are easy to hold onto and resent.
Moving forward is an important part of any recovery. Focusing on letting go of past hurts will enable you to find joy and relief.
Sherry Lutz Herrington is the owner of Sherrington Financial Fitness, a business consulting and accounting firm specializing in strategic business planning and solid financial accounting for businesses. She is also the author of Strong Women Thriving (https://strongwomenthriving.com/), a blog which focuses on empowering women to be financially savvy, particularly after experiencing financial abuse. Sherry is currently writing a new book that both shares her personal story and addresses financial abuse. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Join our FB group https://www.facebook.com/groups/womensurivingfinancialabuse