The Ingratitude Challenge

There are plenty of things I’m grateful for, and when the feeling of gratefulness washes over me, it’s a beautiful feeling.

For some reason, though, whenever I see one of the many varieties of “100 Days of Gratitude,” I feel the opposite of grateful.

Not at the person posting. And not even about whatever it is they’re grateful for. I don’t know, something about the forced cheerfulness of it makes me feel like this:


And because I’ve been making a solo performance / manifesto over the last year or so about why positive thinking doesn’t work (among other things), I had the idea the other day of starting an Ingratitude Challenge.

It made me laugh to imagine it, and then I thought: hey, this would be a good experiment. What happens if I post every day about something I am not grateful for — something that SUCKS?

Here’s what I want to find out:

  1. Does focusing on what you are not grateful for make you feel less grateful?
  2. Or will it actually have the opposite effect?

My instinct is that #2 will be true, and so far that has proven to be true. Today when I sat down to think about what I was going to say, the act of trying to be ungrateful made my mind suddenly flood with things I was grateful for.

Strange, isn’t it?

Anyway, so I’m curious to see what happens. For ten days leading up to the opening of my show, I am going to talk about something I am supremely ungrateful for every day.

There is only one rule: keep the focus on what sucks. No silver linings, no sympathy, no bright sides.

Want to join in? Share this on facebook or look for the #IngratitudeChallenge on twitter.


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