Thursday, January 13, 2011

Gratitude: Month Two

I am well into my second month of my gratitude project and am now exchanging messages of gratitude with a dear friend that I went to college with who I haven't seen for several decades.   I can't even begin to describe the richness of the exchanges.  At this point, writing my daily gratitude list has become a habit, as natural as brushing my teeth.  When I started the project on Thanksgiving day, I was so excited about it that I couldn't wait to do my gratitude list and I would put a great deal of thought into choosing my three things; I wanted them to be the right things.  I wanted them to be profound.  Then, after a few weeks, the novelty of the project wore off, and it began to feel like a chore.  And for a few days in there, but only a few, my mood so dark, it was difficult to think of three things, and the whole project felt like a lame joke.

But nowadays the gratitude list flows easily.  Whatever resonates at the moment I decide to do my list, I write.  One day I am thankful for opportunities to begin anew.  Another day I am thankful for lemons.  The longer I do this project the more I love it.  I think it is true that what you give your attention to grows.  These thoughts, the positive thoughts that I have cultivated and cajoled, have now become second nature.  These thoughts have changed the way that I live.  These days I would describe myself as a happy person. I am grateful to be alive.  I happily greet the morning and climb into bed excited for sleep so that I can wake up and do this life thing some more.  In the words of Dr. Norman Vincent Peale, "Change your thoughts and you change your world."

I am grateful for the people who have signed on to do it with me.  I have three more gratitude buddies in the wings and I am excited about month long exchanges with each of them. And as I continue, I will keep you posted.

Wishing you balance,


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