In a culture where most of us are pre-programmed to strive for more and lust after bigger and better things, we often forget to appreciate what we have. Josh reminds us in this video that there is much to be grateful for.
"My accident, the loss of loved ones. The most commonly asked question that I always get about my talks is what I want people to get from me standing in front of them and sharing what I've been through and my story, whether it's my accident, the loss of loved ones, dealing with being different, having a body that necessarily you're not happy with, society not always accepting you and all that stuff, and I think one thing that I want more than anything is for people not to give up on themselves.
For so long I just hated myself, I hated what I did to myself, whether it was my accident, what I did to my family, and I for years lived with a lot of regret, and that tore me apart without even knowing how much it did tear me apart. And it wasn't until I met my now wife that I realized I had so much to be grateful for. I may not have had the body that I wanted, I may not have had the life I thought I was going to have when I was 18-years-old before I broke my neck, but I had everything I could of ever wished for and that was my health.
I wasn't 100%, but I could still feed myself. I could still go to the toilet by myself. I could still wash myself. I could still brush my teeth. I can still feed myself and it's so many things that so many people cannot do in this day and age with these injuries, like spinal cord injury and they can't do these things. And that's all they want and that's all we can all ever want is our own freedom and our own ways of being able to feel like you have your own independence.
When you lose independence and freedom you feel like you have nothing. All the material things you have, cars, motorbikes, money is nothing when you lose something like this, like a spinal cord injury. And when I met my wife, for the first time I had someone that didn't even ask me what was wrong with me. Nothing has ever been too hard. I know it's frustrating, especially there are some things I can't do, even stuff like moving house. You know, I'm sitting there and my wife has to pick up all the heavy stuff and it does my head in, but then there are other things I can do.
So with my talks, what I do is share my story. I share what I've been through. My spinal cord injury is only a small percentage of my whole talk. I want people to know that they have everything they could ever wish for because when you have a spinal cord injury and you break your neck, all you want is everything you already have. Does that mean anything to you guys? I know everyone wants cars and motorbikes and houses and these successful things that people think are success, but success is being happy every single day you wake up.
I don't have a lot of money, but that doesn't bother me because I'm happy every single day. I've got a beautiful wife and a beautiful son. I've got my health. I can get out of bed. I can get food on our table. That's happiness to me. That's success to me is being happy, so take one thing from this, from this video is just be happy in yourself and stop focusing on the things that necessarily you think are important right now, but they're not.
Look at what you have around you. People focus so much on what they don't have that they forget to focus on what they do have. Thanks guys and I hope you're well and Merry Christmas."
In a culture where most of us are pre-programmed to strive for more and lust after bigger and better things, we often forget to appreciate what we have. Josh reminds us in this video that there is much to be grateful for. Here are some things I do to help remind myself to be grateful- even for the little things.
Start your own gratitude journey with these exercises:
- Keep a gratitude journal.
- Before you fall asleep, reflect on the day and identify things you are grateful for.
- View adversity as an opportunity to learn and grow.
- Change your ‘thought channel’. If you find yourself dwelling on a negative thought, replace it with a positive thought. Do this enough and you may be surprised your ‘self-talk’ begins to be uplifting!
- Do small acts of service for others. It can be as simple as writing a note. There is something about helping someone else that makes a difference in the way we feel.
Push on, Leslie
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The opinions and experiences presented herein are for informational use only. Individual results may vary depending on your condition. Always consult with your health care professional. This individual has been compensated by Bard Medical for the time and effort in preparing this article for BARD’s further use and distribution. BMD/BMDA/0918/0703