Develop An Attitude of Gratitude


A focus on gratitude is particularly necessary at this time of year.  It is, after all, the season of joy and glad tidings.  But truly, it should be a year round, every single day kind of practice.

The Universal Laws of Attraction teach that when you are grateful for what you have you will naturally attract more things to be grateful for.  The universe works that way.

More on this topic:  The Inuksuk

I recently ran across a blog post that included a list of steps you can take to create your ‘attitude of gratitude’.  I just had to share it and ask you which of these you already practice, which you need to work on and those that you think really aren’t relevant.  Leave your thoughts in the comments section at the bottom of this post please.  I’d love to read your them….

here are six simple tips on how to make gratitude a natural part of your daily routine, so you can attract more joy and abundance into your life all year long:

Take a couple of minutes each morning to write down everything you appreciate in life

Starting your day this way primes you to be receptive and grateful for everything your day will bring. It also helps you cultivate an air of positivity that makes you naturally more attractive to other positive people – and inspires them to want to help you achieve your goals.

Make a conscious effort to appreciate at least three people every day

By letting people know how much you appreciate them, you increase their own sense of appreciation and self-worth, and encourage them to pay this positive energy forward to other people.

While most people enjoy receiving verbal appreciation, written notes are also nice because they can be saved and re-read.

Play the Appreciation Game

Set a specific time each day to consciously appreciate everything you encounter. An ideal time to do this is on your way to or from work. Appreciate the people you pass, the road you walk on, the cars that let you merge into a different lane, the street signs that make it easy for you to know where you’re going, the rain that’s nourishing the plants and trees, and so on.

Look for the good in all situations – even those you would normally view as negative. As the saying goes, “Every cloud has a silver lining.” For example, when my wife was in a car accident a few years ago, she could have chosen to berate herself or question her judgment. Instead, she focused on her gratitude for suffering only minor injuries and for the help she received from other drivers.

Carry a physical token of gratitude in your pocket, such as a heart-shaped stone, crystal, or some other small item

A physical reminder can bring you back to your practice of gratitude when your mind has drifted elsewhere. As you reach into your pocket throughout the day and feel the token, use it as a reminder to stop, breathe and take a moment to fully experience the emotion of gratitude. The more conscious effort you put into seeking it out, the easier it will be to find it – and the more powerful your experience will be.

Remember to appreciate the smallest blessings

The best way to activate your gratitude is by acknowledging the gifts most people take for granted. If you have food in your refrigerator, clothes in your closet and a roof over your head, you are better off than seventy-five percent of the world’s population.

If you eat three meals a day, you are far better off than the 1 billion people on the planet who eat once a day at most.

Do you have a phone? How about a car that allows you to travel to work or to explore the country? Is your family healthy? Do you have a computer and Internet access to stay in touch with the world, get access to education, and perform work for which you are paid? Do you have clean water to drink?

Celebrate these simple blessings. These daily conveniences are gifts that most people in the world do not enjoy.

Appreciate yourself

Finally, don’t forget to appreciate your OWN positive qualities and accomplishments. In addition to celebrating your big successes, acknowledge your small daily successes too.”

I particularly like the last point.  It is very difficult to appreciate others when you’re not comfortable with you.  Like most things in life, it is a process to get there.

Something to think about:  “There is more hunger for love and appreciation in this world than for bread.”  (Mother Teresa)

Climate change, coffee cups and credibility

I’ve started blogging again.  It has been a while.

Why did I take such a lengthy break?  My mentor asked me the same quesion and I couldn’t come up with any kind of a rational response.  As a matter of fact, I couldn’t even come up with an irrational response.  So blogging is back.

Let me begin this blogging rebirth with a disclaimer.  Please read it carefully.  I’m hoping it will stave off any discussion about global warming.

This is not about global warming.  I don’t have enough information to formulate an opinion and I don’t have enough scientific background to intelligently analyze what little information I do have.

This is a post about credibility.  But it kicked my thought processes into overdrive when I read recent reports about the ‘People’s Climate March’ held last month in New York.  The reports estimate that approximately 300,000 people banded together to shed light on climate change and global warming.  That’s a lot of people who are committed to cleaning up the environment, recycling and all the other necessary elements required for a sustainable, clean planet.  Kudos to the organizers.  Great turnout.

However, here’s where it gets sticky for me.  The reports of the march included detailed descriptions of the aftermath.  Estimates from the clean up crews indicate that over 150,000 paper and styrofoam coffee  cups, thousands and thousands of paper and cardboard signs, plastic water bottles and tons of other litter were left on the streets by the marchers.

garbageThe definition of the word ‘credibility’ according to the dictionary is “the quality or power of inspiring belief”.  I define ‘credibility’ as doing what you say you are going to do.

Are your actions in alignment with your words?

Perhaps you see where I’m going with this already.  If your stated purpose is to assist in greening the environment, wouldn’t it be a much more credible gesture if you picked up the tons of garbage, much of it recyclable and compostable, that you left on the streets during the march?  That way, your message wouldn’t be diluted by headlines like “protesters branded as hypocrites“.  Much more effective would have been headlines that read “marchers drive home their point by leaving parade route spotless”.

And what of  actor Leonardo DiCaprio’s passionate speech to the United Nations on the same topic?  The words were certainly delivered sincerely, professionally and well intentioned.  But this is the same Leonardo DiCaprio that rented one of the worlds largest luxury yachts for the entire FIFA world cup tournament, a vessel that is reported to use upwards of 1,000 gallons of diesel fuel per day.

Actions in alignment with words?

Finally, to the point.  We all are judged by our words and our actions.  Not individual words and individual actions.  Words and actions are judged together creating credibility.  And if those words and actions are not in sync, credibility disappears.  As always, my mission is to make you think.  So spend a few minutes thinking about your words and your actions.  Are they in alignment?  Are you just talking the talk or are you ‘walking the talk’?

I love this quote from Hannah Arendt:  “Power is actualized only when word and deed have not parted company”.

Good to be back 🙂