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How to Appreciate Your Life

FlourishAnyway is an Industrial/Organizational psychologist committed to uplifting and educating others to be reach their full potential.

You Have More to Be Grateful for Than You Think

Frequent complaining can ruin your happy place as well as that of others. Uncover the statistics behind how lucky you really are and how grateful you should feel.

Frequent complaining can ruin your happy place as well as that of others. Uncover the statistics behind how lucky you really are and how grateful you should feel.

ATTENTION

We hereby interrupt all whining, complaining, grumbling, venting, and griping for this important announcement. If you are reading this, you have more to be grateful for than you think.

Ain't It Awful? Entitlement and Inaction of Griping

I get that it's fun to complain. I'm pretty good at it myself.

Venting lets us blow off steam. It can connect like-minded people. On occasion, complaints can even get things done.

Typically, however, griping is about joint indignity and inaction. A couple of folks tisk-tisking and ain't-it-awfuling over something that is entirely fixable. We address each other with shared outrage rather than speaking to the source of our issue.

We gripe about the forces which we cannot change or the things we are unwilling to work hard enough to impact. Grumbling goes on too long. It wastes time. It goes nowhere. We feel entitled to do it.

And as cathartic as it can be to commiserate ... have you ever wondered if you're just muddying up other people's "happy place" with all your venting? Perhaps you're even ruining your own.

We're better than this. (I know I am, and I'm pretty certain you are too!)

Hey, Sour Puss! Replace Griping with Gratitude

I understand how fun it is to complain.  Griping is often about sharing joint indignity rather than doing anything useful to address a problem.  Come on!  We're better than this!

I understand how fun it is to complain. Griping is often about sharing joint indignity rather than doing anything useful to address a problem. Come on! We're better than this!

Reader Poll

Let's Focus on What's Going Right

Yes, there are loads of crappy things going on in the world. (Don't you get me started!)

However, it's all about perspective. If you're reading this, you have some major things that have gone RIGHT for you. I'll kickstart your gratitude by listing five big things because you're a winner and you don't even know it! Life has worked in your favor. Thus, it's time to ponder the glass-half-full side of life, even if just for a moment.

Facts and Statistics, Not Rainbows and Magic Ponies

Let the facts and statistics speak for themselves.  If you're reading this, you've beaten so many odds already!  (But wouldn't it be fun to talk rainbows and magic ponies?)

Let the facts and statistics speak for themselves. If you're reading this, you've beaten so many odds already! (But wouldn't it be fun to talk rainbows and magic ponies?)

Let's Talk Facts

Now, I'm not here to talk rainbows and magic ponies. Let's talk facts—that is, real reasons to appreciate the life you have. Let's look at the statistics so you can see how you've beaten the incredible odds already, and you're continuing to do so every day.

1. Appreciate the Odds of Your Existence

If you're reading this, you've already won life's jackpot. Yep, the fact that YOU ARE HERE is phenomenal.

You Were a Winner Before You Were Born

Competition was fierce in the all-or-nothing race to kick-start your existence. The odds were most certainly against you.

The average male produces 525 billion sperm cells over a lifetime, and the average woman releases a total of only about 450 mature eggs.1 At one time, you were lost in that crowd, vying for the chance to exist.

Talk about being triumphant over the odds! In this very basic way, you were a winner before you were even born.

You've Already Won Life's Lottery

Don't let your whining and complaining be what defines you. Perspective matters, and so does attitude. My dad knows he's already won the lottery in life again and again.

Don't let your whining and complaining be what defines you. Perspective matters, and so does attitude. My dad knows he's already won the lottery in life again and again.

Appreciate the Opportunity to Face One More Day

Every day since birth, you've somehow awakened to face another day. And you should count even the rotten days as a personal victory because you made it to the next sunrise. (Pinch yourself to make sure this is real, you lucky devil!)

Each day is a new opportunity. However, there are 154,080 people on average who don't get that chance. That's 107 people who die every minute.2 They don't get to see whether their day will be terrific, terrible, or something in between.

But that's not you, my friend. Not yet! You are still kickin'! Woo hoo!

You may not fully realize how much of a winner you really are.

You may not fully realize how much of a winner you really are.

2. Value Your Ability to Function

If you're reading this, you can breathe, see, and you have the use of your hands. Or you have an assistive method—human, mechanical, or electronic—that allows you to function regardless. (If that's the case, then you get bonus points for adaptability and resilience. Cha-ching!)

Worldwide, there are 285 million people who are visually impaired, 90% of whom live in developing countries.3 Major causes of blindness include unoperated cataracts (33%), uncorrected refractive errors (43%), and glaucoma (2%).

Maybe your eyesight isn't as good as it used to be, but here you are, able to read this today. And that's reason enough to celebrate. Woot woot!

Don't Wait: Appreciate It Now

I never fully appreciated the miracle of being able to see until I lost vision in one eye due to optic neuritis, a very painful condition often associated with multiple sclerosis. My color vision was at first reduced to black and white, then after several weeks, it was lights out for me. Total darkness. I didn't know if my sight would return or whether my other eye was next.

As my vision gradually returned, I felt like Double Rainbow Guy (see video below). The sky's vivid color and just being able to see depth again made me giddy with appreciation. Don't test the old adage about not appreciating what you have until it's gone. Feel lucky today, as in right now!

The same is true with being able to use your hands and to breathe. You can either focus on what you don't have or revel in what you do. It's a matter of choice, perspective. It's up to you.

You Gotta Love the Double Rainbow Guy

Use of Your Hands: Common Causes of Motor Impairment

These are conditions that often affect motor coordination, including the ability to use one's hands. Even those of us who didn't win the Don't Get A Major Disease Lottery can find something to feel lucky about.

Illness Or Injury Typically Affecting Motor SkillsPrevalenceCause(s)

Spinal cord injury

12,000 new cases each year in the United States, with about half occurring among young adults ages 16-30.

Motor vehicle accidents, falls, and acts of violence are the three most common causes.

Loss or damage of limb(s)

Each day, 500 Americans lose a limb.

The three most common causes of limb loss: vascular disease (including diabetes and peripheral artery disease), trauma, and cancer.

Cerebral Palsy (CP)

Cerebral Palsy currently affects approximately 764,000 adults and children in the United States.

Cerebral Palsy is a chronic, incurable, and non-progressive disorder that is the result of a brain injury or brain malformation.

Muscular Dystrophy (MD)

50,000 Americans have some form of Muscular Dystrophy. The majority of them are males.

Muscular Dystrophy is a group of over 30 inherited diseases that causes muscles to progressively weaken.

Multiple Sclerosis (MS)

In the US, there are approximately 400,000 MS patients. More than twice as many women as men are affected. It is most commonly diagnosed during the "prime of life," ages 20-40.

Multiple Sclerosis is an incurable, degenerative, and unpredictable autoimmune disease that involves a breach of the blood-brain barrier. The body's immune system attacks nerves' protective myelin coating.

Lou Gehig's disease (ALS)

About 5,000 Americans are diagnosed each year with ALS. About half of patients die within 3-5 years of symptom onset.

ALS is a rapidly progressive neurodegenerative disease involving the loss of voluntary muscle action, paralysis, and death.

Arthiritis

Arthritis affects 1 in 5 American adults. Two-thirds of arthritis patients are under age 65, including about 300,000 children.

Arthritis is painful joint inflammation and stiffness caused by the wearing away of protective cartilage. Causes include infection or injury, problems with autoimmunity, etc.

Parkinson's Disease (PD)

Approimately 60,000 Americans are diagnosed with Parkinson's annually

Parkinson's is a degenerative brain disorder. Suspected causes include genetics as well as environmental risk factors.

Your life has more sparkle and glitter than you realize.

Your life has more sparkle and glitter than you realize.

3. Appreciate Your Skills and Your Ability to Impact Your Destiny

If you're reading this, you also have skills you probably take for granted. Talk about the possibilities that are open to you when you can learn, reason, and read!

One in five Americans cannot read above a fourth grade level. About half of those who are at the lowest levels of literacy don't even comprehend how poor their skills truly are. They describe their own literacy levels as "good" or "very good."4

But that's not you! This article is written at a seventh grade level, and Friend, you are rocking it!

Don't Let Complaining Muddy up Your Happy Place

Rampant complaining muddies up your happy place and that of others.

Rampant complaining muddies up your happy place and that of others.

Your Choices, Your Destiny

If you're reading this, you made a choice to do it. Each day, we make hundreds of choices, and some matter a lot more than others.

Relish the capacity to make your own decisions because your destiny is in your hands. Examples of pivotal choices include:

Finishing High School

If you wisely opted to stay in school, then congratulate yourself! This choice monumentally impacts the trajectory of your life path, and you nailed it!

A high school diploma is necessary in today's competitive job market. Without it, you're ineligible for 90% of the available jobs in the United States.5 Dropouts earn $300,000 less than their peers who graduate from high school and nearly $1 million less than a college graduates.6

High school dropouts are also 2.5 times more likely to rely on government assistance programs (e.g., welfare, healthcare benefits). Also, three-quarters of the inmates in state prisons are high school dropouts. Encourage every kid you know to stay in school.

Marrying the Right Person

"Marry the right person. This one decision will determine 90% of your happiness or misery." - H. Jackson Brown, American author

Was this guy right, or what? Marriage has important benefits for almost every aspect of health and happiness. Even when married people do experience illness, they are more likely to survive and to flourish.7

For example, married people are less likely to

  • require surgery
  • suffer from the flu, pneumonia, dementia, cancer, or heart attacks, and
  • experience violent death.8

Married cancer patients are 20% less likely to die from their disease. Compared with unmarried cancer patients, they also display less distress, depression, and anxiety.9 Similarly, heart surgical patients are three times more likely to survive the three months following their surgery if they are married.10

Marriage can provide both logistical and social support, but it seems that relationship quality is critical in reaping the "marriage benefit." A recent study found that couples with poorer marriage quality—in which both partners felt ambivalent toward the other—had significantly higher calcium buildup in the arteries, a risk factor for heart disease.11 The health risk of a stressful marriage has been compared to smoking a pack of cigarettes a day.

If you chose the right life partner, that's reason to rejoice! You can tell people that marriage is no ball and chain. It's your lifeline!

"I Feel Lucky" by Mary Chapin Carpenter

4. Appreciate Your Freedoms

If you're reading this, do a happy dance for the freedoms that you have. Those freedoms came at a cost, even if you didn't have to pay it. Appreciate your freedoms and those who helped to secure and keep it.

You are one of the luckiest people on the planet if you

  • have the right to gather, publish, and distribute information without government censorship. Only 14% of the world's people enjoy freedom of the press, according to Freedom House, an American-based human rights advocacy organization.12
  • can express yourself freely through all forms of communication—what you write, sing, Tweet, video, post, paint, and how you otherwise express your ideas and opinions.

Appreciate Your Ability to Express Yourself Freely

If you can freely express yourself, be thankful.  There are so many people around the world who are censored by their governments.

If you can freely express yourself, be thankful. There are so many people around the world who are censored by their governments.

They Don't Have Your Freedoms

Example CountriesHow Their Citizens Don't Enjoy Your Freedoms

Libya

no independent broadcast or print media

Vietnam, Oman, China

netizens are arrested and punished; the Internet is censored

Turkmenistan, Equatorial Guinea

media creates hero-worship of the dictator/leader

Burma/Myanmar

the military regime monitors movement through microchipped citizen cards and restricts movement of political dissidents, women, government workers, and migrant workers

Cuba

citizens must request permission when they want to reside elsewhere, or they will be forcibly returned to their homes

Some countries do not enjoy the First Amendment-type free speech that Americans do. Even India, the world's largest democracy, has been described as struggling with a "free speech crisis."13

A number of other countries ban their citizens from taking unpopular positions such as genocide denial, denouncing or making a parody of the state religion, or disagreeing with the politics of the country's ruler.14

Even if you're narrow-minded, a touch strange, or you don't have your facts straight, at least you have a right to be publicly wrong. (And others have a right to tell you so.) Celebrate the right to run your mouth!

  • enjoy freedom of movement, the right to travel freely within your own country and live where you want.
  • have the protection of a strict double jeopardy provision. Italy's multiple retrials of Amanda Knox might have made you appreciate this protection. Some nations have exceptions to the double jeopardy doctrine, including exclusions when justice commands it (e.g., new evidence comes to light) or for certain types of crimes (e.g., murder).

Be grateful for your freedoms—even those you will likely never need to exercise.

Save Complaining for the Issues That Matter

If you complain about everything, then nothing is really important.  Establish priorities.  Save the grumbling and griping for the things that really matter.

If you complain about everything, then nothing is really important. Establish priorities. Save the grumbling and griping for the things that really matter.

5. Time and Tangibles: You Have What Others Do Not

If you still feel entitled to muddy up others' happy place with complaints, consider that your access to this article means that you have what others do not.

You are in the fortunate half of the world's population with internet access.15 You're on the lucky side of the "digital divide." Among Americans 10% do not use the Internet or email.16 As they increasingly find themselves out of touch culturally, you can be glad that you are not among them.

If you're reading this, you also have the time to do it, and you're likely among the 77% of people worldwide who have shelter from the elements.

A Glass Half Full

Appreciate your advantages even if your time is rushed, the computer and wifi connection are not yours, and you have to read in small snippits.

As imperfect as your life may be, find something in it to celebrate. Negative Nellie, go look at that glass again. Because even if your glass is half empty, there are others who wish they had your glass. A half-filled glass can be plenty good indeed.

Half a glass can be plenty good.

Half a glass can be plenty good.

Reader Poll

Words of Wisdom on Complaining

"Any fool can criticize, condemn and complain -- and most fools do.

- Benjamin Franklin, American founding father

"If you have time to whine and complain about something then you have the time to do something about it."

- Anthony J. D'Angelo, American author

"If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude. Don't complain."

- Maya Angelou, American author and poet

"The future rewards those who press on. I don't have time to feel sorry for myself. I don't have time to complain. I'm going to press on."

- Barack Obama, 44th President of the United States

"Say and do something positive that will help the situation; it doesn't take any brains to complain."

- Robert A. Cook, American author

"I had no shoes and complained, until I met a man who had no feet."

- Indian Proverb

"You can complain because roses have thorns, or you can rejoice because thorns have roses."

- Ziggy

"Today I can complain because the weather is rainy or I can be thankful that the grass is getting watered for free."

- Author Unknown

"People won't have time for you if you are always angry or complaining."

- Stephen Hawking, British author and theoretical physicist

"The people who live in a golden age usually go around complaining how yellow everything looks."

- Randall Jarrell, American poet and literary critic

Gripe If You Want To, but You Have a Lot to Be Thankful For

Put your happy face on.  Stop the whining.  You have a lot to be grateful for.

Put your happy face on. Stop the whining. You have a lot to be grateful for.

Sources

1Olson, E. R. (2014, January 24). Why Are 250 Million Sperm Cells Released During Sex? Retrieved from http://www.livescience.com/32437-why-are-250-million-sperm-cells-released-during-sex.html.

2Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) (n.d.). The World Factbook. Retrieved February 23, 2014, from https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/geos/xx.html.

3World Health Organization (2013, October). Visual impairment and blindness. Retrieved February 22, 2014, from http://www.who.int/mediacentre/factsheets/fs282/en/.

4Durden, T. (2013, February 13). 23% Of America Is Illiterate | Zero Hedge. Retrieved February 22, 2014, from http://www.zerohedge.com/news/2013-02-13/23-america-illiterate.

5Fields, G. (2008, October 21). The High School Dropout's Economic Ripple Effect. Retrieved from https://www.wsj.com/articles/SB122455013168452477.

6Johnston, C. (2011, July 24). Series Overview: The Cost Of Dropping Out. Retrieved from http://www.npr.org/2011/07/24/138508517/series-overview-the-cost-of-dropping-out.

7Moeller, P. (2012, March 22). Why Marriage Makes People Happy. Retrieved from http://money.usnews.com/money/personal-finance/articles/2012/03/22/why-marriage-makes-people-happy.

8Parker-Pope, A. (2010, April 14). Is Marriage Good for Your Health? Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2010/04/18/magazine/18marriage-t.html?pagewanted=all.

9Szabo, L. (2013, February 23). Married cancer patients are more likely to survive. Retrieved from http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/09/23/marriage-cancer-patients/2845087/.

10Huffington Post (2012, March 6). Marriage And Health: Study Suggests Marriage Can Help With Recovery After Heart Surgery. Retrieved from http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/06/marriage-and-health_n_1324509.html.

11Bond, A. (2014, February 20). Marriage Quality May Influence Heart Disease Risk| Reuters. Retrieved from http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/02/20/us-marriage-heart-disease-idUSBREA1J23S20140220.

12Freedom House (2013). Freedom of the Press 2013. Retrieved from http://www.freedomhouse.org/report/freedom-press/freedom-press-2013#.UwjSePldWSo.

13The New York Times Editorial Board (2014, February 20). Muzzling Speech in India. Retrieved from http://www.nytimes.com/2014/02/21/opinion/muzzling-speech-in-india.html.

14Tufekci, Z. (2012, September 14). Why free speech is baffling to many. Retrieved February 23, 2014, from http://globalpublicsquare.blogs.cnn.com/2012/09/14/why-free-speech-is-baffling-to-many/.

15Hern, A. (2018, October 18). Almost 50% of the world is online. What about the other 50%? the Guardian. https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2018/oct/18/almost-50-of-the-world-is-online-what-about-the-other-50.

1610% of Americans don’t use the internet. Who are they? (2020, July 28). Pew Research Center. https://www.pewresearch.org/fact-tank/2019/04/22/some-americans-dont-use-the-internet-who-are-they/.

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2014 FlourishAnyway

Comments

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on November 06, 2020:

Rajan - You're right. Not everyone has such benefits. Thanks for your comment.

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on November 04, 2020:

The fact that one is alive, with functional hands & legs, and seeing others who are less fortunate in this respect than you should make everyone appreciate life and be grateful to the Lord, ever.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on October 25, 2020:

Peggy - Thank you for your kindness. I hope you are doing well. I sure wish they would fix the comments on niche articles!

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on October 25, 2020:

It is time to share this once again. Even in the midst of a pandemic you showed us many reasons why we should appreciate our daily lives. I am glad to find a handful of articles where we can still leave comments. Your Elf on a Shelf article still has me smiling!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 04, 2020:

Umesh - I'm glad you found it motivational.

Umesh Chandra Bhatt from Kharghar, Navi Mumbai, India on March 04, 2020:

This is an exhaustive and nicely written article. Lot of motivation. Thanks for posting.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 01, 2020:

Charles - Thanks for stopping by.

Charles kanga akou from Côte d'Ivoire on February 29, 2020:

Useful article

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on May 03, 2018:

Sean - You've made my WEEK! Thank you for such an enthusiastic comment. I so appreciate it! Have yourself a fantastic day!

Ioannis Arvanitis from Greece, Almyros on May 03, 2018:

AMAZING WORK!!!

My dear Flourish, your Heart is so bright that I am sure that your Guardian Angel wears sunglasses!

Gratitude, Respect and Admiration!

Sean

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 10, 2017:

Paula - What a kind, uplifting message. I appreciate your encouragement, as I really needed it today. No matter what one's situation is in life, there's always something to be thankful for.

Suzie from Carson City on April 10, 2017:

FA......The votes are in. It is settled. You are solidly in the group of HP's very best writers! No doubt about it. I have never read anything but superb work from your pen! Congratulations!

This hub is a basic winner. I am with you 100%. I have always done my utmost to repel negativity and my favorite activity is solving problems. There's rarely anything so bad, so awful, so unbearable that we cannot make improvements or turn things around enough to tolerate.

Taking inventory is a necessity. I learned long ago that we can give ourselves the pep talks we need and while it's often painful, we can pull ourselves up out of the depths of sadness & disappointment.

I DO believe there is always much to be grateful for and plenty of reason to have hope. We'll never escape all misery in life~ that's an unreasonable thought. The key is to realize that life is a series of ups & downs, joy and sadness, and perhaps just enough challenges to keep us on our toes.

Thanks for this wonderful reminder. This is a must read. Peace, Paula

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 09, 2017:

Nadine - Thank you for commenting on my lonely article. I appreciate both your visit and perspective. We do create our own reality!

Nadine May from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa on April 09, 2017:

Excellent article. feeling gratitude for the reality we have created for ourselves only keeps making it better and better. What we focus on we make real. We are the reality Shifters.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 24, 2015:

CMHypno - You are right about that! Have a wonderful weekend, complaint-free and worry-free as well.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 24, 2015:

Prasetio - Thank you so much for your kind words. Have a terrific weekend.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 24, 2015:

elle64 - So glad to hear that! Have a great one!

prasetio30 from malang-indonesia on January 24, 2015:

Very inspiring hub. I live once and I really appreciate my life, especially when I can help others and my life useful for others. I love the words of wisdom above. Take care and vote up!

Prasetio

CMHypno from Other Side of the Sun on January 24, 2015:

Very timely reminder, as when things look bleak it is very easy to fall into a habit if complaining and being dissatisfied about everything. After all the sun comes up for us every morning free of charge and no complaints!

elle64 from Scandinavia on January 24, 2015:

What a fantastic hub,made my weekend.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 23, 2015:

Heidi - Thanks for stopping by and for sharing. It's one of my favorite hubs. Have a terrific weekend!

Heidi Thorne from Chicago Area on January 23, 2015:

Great hub to start off the New Year! Voted up and sharing. Happy Complaint-Free Weekend!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 23, 2015:

CASE1WORKER - Thank you for your kind words of encouragement. Have a terrific weekend!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 23, 2015:

Thank you so much, dear talented Anna.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 23, 2015:

Susie - I sure do appreciate that compliment. Have a great weekend.

CASE1WORKER from UNITED KINGDOM on January 23, 2015:

What can I say? I cannot come up with enough superlatives- I guess it echos that song from the Life of Brian "Always look on the bright side of life"- I think that this hub should be required reading for all of us stuck in offices, shops or work who are fed up- Well done

Susie Lehto from Minnesota on January 23, 2015:

Wow, you sure do create the most interesting hubs. Who would think that it could be done about a negative topic like complaining? But, you did it!

This is awesome!

Anna Haven from Scotland on January 22, 2015:

What a brilliant hub. Moods spread and sharing the positive is definitely the best outcome for all concerned.

A beautifully laid out and inspirational hub. Great job. :)

Mary Hyatt from Florida on January 22, 2015:

I would say by all definitions: this is a stellar Hub! I like the way you referenced all your statistics. Excellent Hub; very informative.

I really don't complain. I learned a long time ago, complaining does absolutely NO good.

Voted UP, etc. and shared.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on January 22, 2015:

Peggy - I'm so happy you enjoyed this as much as you did. It's one of my favorite hubs. I appreciate your sharing. Have a wonderful weekend.

Peggy Woods from Houston, Texas on January 22, 2015:

I knew from reading the title that this was going to be a good one to read. We all have many things of which to be grateful. Definitely sharing! :))

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on September 11, 2014:

TheWritingnag - Thank you for the kind compliment. Have a great day!

Writing Nag from Colorado Springs, Colorado on September 11, 2014:

This is such good advice and I'm bookmarking it for those days I don't appreciate what I have. Well done!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on July 21, 2014:

ologsinquito - Thanks for visiting and for pinning. Have a wonderful week.

ologsinquito from USA on July 21, 2014:

We do have to appreciate each and every day and look for the blessings in everything, even crazy, difficult situations. Life is what you make it. You have an incredible attitude despite your chronic illness. I'm pinning this again.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on July 08, 2014:

CyberShelley - Thanks for the glowing endorsement!

Shelley Watson on July 08, 2014:

A positive, affirming article reminding us all to smell the roses, the majority of people should have very little to complain about, when the beggars on the street, who really have nothing, are so happy when you give them a little money and food. Brilliant hub, thanks for sharing!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on July 03, 2014:

Graham - Although I am sorry Kennedy's Disease has decided to happen to you, I am delighted that you have embraced the fact that we each have limitations and sometimes the greatest limitation can be one's own perspective. Keep looking for the value the world and you can bring to one another. There is so much to be thankful for, even as imperfect as our situations may be. I'm rooting for you.

Graham Lee from Lancashire. England. on July 02, 2014:

Hi FlourishAnyway. Brilliant! You cover so much I am unable to comment on it all. I have Kennedys Disease, that's the common name, it's actually called Spinal Bulbar Muscular Atrophy. Very similar to ALS same outcome only in slow motion. Lifespan not affected just slow deterioration. I am a full time wheelchair user - I only mention this to make a stronger point when I say I agree with so much you have said and I see things from the same aspect as yourself. You research stands as a beacon to the rest of us. So well done.

Voted up and all and following.

Graham.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on June 22, 2014:

Susan - You are only one person and remember it's only work. Do what you can do and take care of yourself. You only have one you.

Susan Hambidge from Kent, England on June 21, 2014:

This hub is just what I needed to read right now. At work at the moment there is too much for me to do, way too much, so Friday I spent a big part of the day grumbling, griping and moaning. I am going to go in Monday with this hub's advice ringing in my ears, and have a positive day - and probably get a lot more done at the same time. Thanks.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on June 18, 2014:

Tori - You provide great thoughts here.

Tori Canonge from North Carolina on June 18, 2014:

Ever since I entered to social services field, I began to realize how much I take the little things for granted, such as having an normally developed body and brain. I am so fortunate to have the ability to go to college, to have a full-time job, and to socialize. There are people in this world who don't get the same opportunities. I've started making it a habit to thank God every morning for a new day and for creating me for a purpose. Great hub!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on June 16, 2014:

Sushma Webber - You provide us beautiful thoughts. Thank you.

Sushma Webber from New Zealand on June 16, 2014:

Gratitude is sign of spiritual maturity. Great hub to motivate us to be grateful for what we already have. Mindfulnees meditation practices also help to accept life as it is in this present moment. We have to be grateful we have this present moment and are still breathing. Where there is life, there is hope for happiness.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on May 07, 2014:

Hackslap - I like your perspective. Thanks for reading and commenting.

Harry from Sydney, Australia on May 06, 2014:

Reading a hub like this makes you realize there're so many things in life which you take for granted .. .. I'm a true believer in Reiki and the Law of Attraction and can't stress enough the importance of subconscious and constant gratitude... ..great hub! .voted up!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on May 06, 2014:

Mj - Have a sunshine and magic ponies kind of day!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on May 06, 2014:

ologsinquito - Thanks a lot! Have a great day!

Marcy J. Miller from Arizona on May 06, 2014:

Awwwww … this was pure magic. Pony magic, really. As a normally upbeat person, this came to me at a time when I can use a reminder. Thank you for the happy hub (and beautifully written, as always).

Best -- Mj

ologsinquito from USA on May 06, 2014:

This is such a beautiful message that I want to share and pin today on this beautiful spring day.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 28, 2014:

Rebecca - Glad you enjoyed it! Have a great week!

Rebecca Mealey from Northeastern Georgia, USA on April 28, 2014:

Nicely done! This is a real "feel good" read. Makes one stop and think how trivial some of our complaints are. Thanks!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 24, 2014:

manatita44 - That rainbow guy is awesome, isn't he? High on life! Thanks for reading and commenting, and have yourself an awesome day!

manatita44 from london on April 23, 2014:

Very very nice article. Great Rainbow guy. The child, the child ... we all need this. Great quotes. Well done!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 15, 2014:

Raymond - Glad you enjoyed this! Have a terrific day!

Raymond Philippe from The Netherlands on April 15, 2014:

Put on a happy face! That is what I did after reading your hub. Interesting observations. A gem.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 15, 2014:

creativelycc - I'm so glad yo agree. We can choose the world we live in -- hopeful, positive, trusting, giving. By seeing the world this way we can influence others too.

Carrie L Cronkite from Maine on April 14, 2014:

I love this hub! It is full of positive energy and hope. Everyone should read this. Too many people complain in the world and see the glass half empty. I join with you and choose to be thankful even for the little things, find the good in people and in challenging situations. Blessings to you!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 14, 2014:

Audrey - Thanks for stopping by. I'm spending today with my aunt, Sister Alice, who can really teach us all a thing or two about appreciation for the gifts that we have in this life. And you, dear Audrey, have a fantastic gift with poetry!

Audrey Howitt from California on April 14, 2014:

Just needed to read this today---Happy Monday to you!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on April 01, 2014:

dis-cover - Keep up your positive attitude! Thanks for reading and enjoy your day!

Nikolic Predrag from Serbia, Belgrade on April 01, 2014:

This article is so valuable. People should read this every morning. Luckily my dad use to talk with me on this topic since I was in school. I enjoy in every minute of my life and I'm a happy man. Like always, great hub.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 22, 2014:

cheeluarv - Thank you for visiting. Have a lovely weekend and count your lucky stars for all that you have. I will do the same!

cheeluarv from INDIA on March 22, 2014:

true,most of the time we brood over on what we don't have than on what we have. Very inspiring hub to see chances of life in a positive way.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 21, 2014:

CMHypno - That is a terrific perspective. There are may who have died and endured great hardship so that we can freely complain about how bad we've got it.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 21, 2014:

Rajan - Indeed life offers many things we need to quit complaining about. Even if it's not a perfect life, there are many who would trade us for it.

CMHypno from Other Side of the Sun on March 21, 2014:

Great hub and highlights how much time a lot us spend complaining about 'first world problems'. If I get too mired in the muck I remind myself that in my many years of life so far I have been lucky enough never to have faced a day with absolutely no food and have not been in a hospital since I was five (yes you can be single and healthy lol!) And as this year is the centenary of the start of the Great War, I remind myself that unlike my grandfather and great-grandfather it is unlikely I will have to spend four years in a muddy trench being bombarded with shells and bullets

Rajan Singh Jolly from From Mumbai, presently in Jalandhar, INDIA. on March 20, 2014:

What an amazingly motivating hub! We have so many things to be thankful for and we are not even aware of. I'm sure after reading this a lot of us will change their perspective about what life has offered us.

Voted up and shared.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 17, 2014:

Better Yourself - Glad you're a happy camper concentrating on all that is good. Thank you for reading and commenting.

Better Yourself from North Carolina on March 17, 2014:

Well done! There are definitely moments when I need this reminder. And looking at the bigger picture I have way too much to be thankful for to be a grump about the small stuff. :)

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 12, 2014:

Mindi - It's terrific that you stopped by. We can each choose our futures every day with a positive world view or one that is glum. Even when things aren't going great, we still have a lot to be grateful for. Have a great day!

Amanda Littlejohn on March 12, 2014:

Yes. Yes. Yes.

Every thought of action is an expenditure of energy. Expenditure of energy causes changes to occur. Better by far to expend the energy in positive modes based on realistic steps then splurge it out on griping and negativity.

I have no complaints about the message of this excellent hub!

Bless. :)

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 11, 2014:

vespawoolf - Thank you for dropping in and taking the time to comment. We all have things to be thankful for; sometimes it just takes a little push.

Vespa Woolf from Peru, South America on March 11, 2014:

This is so true. Just being alive means we have so much more going for us than many of the human beings who have walked the earth. I'm an overall positive person but I have days when I struggle to stay positive. My husband, on the other hand, can see the positive in even the most negative situation. It's one of his qualities that attracted me to him! I love your list of sayings about complainers...a great way to end a well written article.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 04, 2014:

Dolores - I'm glad this gave you a boost and even happier that you have found ways to flourish in your life in spite of the forces that may try to keep you down. You're a winner!

Dolores Monet from East Coast, United States on March 04, 2014:

This was wonderful and inspirational. It can be a great temptation to wallow in the negative well. Believe me, I've had a tough couple of years and could turn into a total negative nelly. But I will not allow the bad things in life to ruin my life. I will rise above it and thrive, even if everything is a bit tougher. Achieving small goals works. And thinking of others works well too.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on March 02, 2014:

Nadine - Thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. I'm happy you found this enjoyable.

Nadine May from Cape Town, Western Cape, South Africa on March 02, 2014:

Like Jodah commented What an amazing hub Flourish. Yes we are really very fortunate to have the opportunity to share with each other how we find life in general, and yes I can only speak for myself. I'm very Great-full. To know that we are, that helps in the down times we all also know about I'm sure.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 28, 2014:

Barbara - Glad you learned something. It is supposed to help with Google search, etc. Thanks for stopping by!

Barbara Badder from USA on February 28, 2014:

I just learned something from your hub. I've been here 3 years and never noticed that you could put titles above the photo. Good job.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 28, 2014:

Thanks for stopping by and commenting, Mari! Have a terrific weekend!

dragonflycolor on February 27, 2014:

Such a great way to start the day. Thanks, Flourish!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 26, 2014:

Susan - Thank you for your warm words of encouragement. Hearing someone constantly gripe can really get on your nerves, and really we are all very lucky even if life isn't perfect. Have a terrific day!

Susan W from The British Isles, Europe on February 26, 2014:

Fantastic hub Flourish! Your hubs has inspired me, I tend to complain about things quite frequently but never realized how I often I did. When I think of others such as people in the countries you mentioned and people with health problems, I realize how lucky I am. Your reasons are exceptionally written, the odds of me being here are near zero yet here I am! I will remember your hub tomorrow as I begin the day and walk with a spring in my step and stop complaining. Life's too short.

I enjoyed reading this, voted beautiful and interesting and shared. Thanks for this wonderful and inspiring read. Loved the quotes and photos. :)

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 26, 2014:

Liz - So many people concentrate on the negative and it can really rain on a person's parade. Glad you enjoyed this. Thanks for taking the time to comment.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 26, 2014:

Vicki - I like inspirational quotes, too. Thanks for reading and commenting!

Elizabeth Parker from Las Vegas, NV on February 26, 2014:

Very awesome and inspirational hub! I try to look at the bright side every day, but I will admit there are some days where I can win an award for being a complainer of the day. LOL. I try to kick that habit to the curb and affirmations each day does help that. I think we're so apt to look at the negative, (which never works), so instead looking at the positive works wonders!!!

Victoria Lynn from Arkansas, USA on February 26, 2014:

I thought I had read this. I meant to. I had it pulled up right after it came out, but I guess I forgot. Well, I'm back to it now! I love you're always positive and encouraging messages. This hub is a great reminder. I especially love the quotations. I'ma quotations girl!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 26, 2014:

Christy - I like your style! Thanks for stopping by.

Christy Birmingham from British Columbia, Canada on February 25, 2014:

I am all about the positive, as people who know me understand. It's not always easy but you outline so many of the reasons why we can/need to be that way. Thanks for sharing many great insights here! You may just have decreased the complaining part of the population by a few people :)

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 24, 2014:

Brian - Thank you. It didn't come back automatically but it's been normal-ish for years. It did make me appreciate being able to see. And that Double Rainbow guy must be on a natural high. Every time I see that clip I laugh. Thanks for reading & glad to see you again.

Brian Prickril from Savannah, GA on February 24, 2014:

First of all, I'm glad your vision improved. Secondly, thanks, I haven't seen double rainbow guy in years! The best part is he claims he was not on drugs at the time. I'm usually a pretty optimistic guy, but every now and then we all need to be reminded of just how good we've got it. Thanks for the cheer!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 24, 2014:

Suzanne - I know exactly what you mean. Sometimes I just want to tell chronic complainers to give it a rest,

Suzanne Day from Melbourne, Victoria, Australia on February 24, 2014:

I guess there are so many reasons for complaining. My folks are getting on in age and they like to complain a bit to make it feel like things are happening in their lives and also to vent a bit. I like to complain because it makes for funny conversations and gossip. But I have met lots of chronic complainers and they are not pleasant to be around. They should read this hub! Voted interesting.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 24, 2014:

Good for you, Sha! Surround yourself with people who uplift and support you. Life is short.

Shauna L Bowling from Central Florida on February 24, 2014:

Flourish, this is an awesome hub. Some people complain so often they don't even realize it. I try to steer clear of chronic complainers. Nobody's going to rain on my parade!

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 24, 2014:

Yay, Dora! Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it. Have a fun-filled week.

Dora Weithers from The Caribbean on February 24, 2014:

Flourish, this is an excellent article for the start of my day--my week. It is chock full of information and inspiration that makes me want to sing. Totally Voted Up! Thank you.

FlourishAnyway (author) from USA on February 24, 2014:

Devika - I'm glad this spoke to you. Have a great week!

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