Publisher - November 2018
The miracle of gratitude
is it shifts your perspective to
such an extent that it changes
the world you see.
— Dr. Robert Holden —
Last November my publisher’s note was about a quote that ignited my consciousness. It has been my guiding light ever since. Last year about this time, right before my divorce from a 28-year relationship was final, I finally “got” the absolute power of gratitude, especially when coupled with grace.
Recently, I pulled out last November’s issue and in doing so read my publisher’s note again. I love the message so much, I would like to share a revised version of it, as it is something we all need to remember daily, especially during the Thanksgiving season.
My sister painted the rise (fronts) of the stairs leading down to the lower level of her home. As I walked up the stairs, each step had a few words written in chalk, which formed this question: What if you woke up tomorrow with only what you thanked God for today?
I stopped and pondered the question, and in doing so, realized how amazingly blessed I am. I felt the power of gratitude fill my spirit, but it also jarred me. Suddenly, things I usually take for granted were running through my head: Things like the sofa, the shower, the stove and my bed. I recounted so many things I had not been thankful for in a very long time—at least not consciously—and maybe never. I realized I would wake up with very little.
Being thankful is both a powerful state of mind and way of life. Gratitude has been scientifically proven to have numerous benefits, such as sleeping better, improving relationships, reducing anger, increasing self-confidence and fostering resilience, to name a few. However, without scientific evidence, I have discovered that gratitude actually is the key to happiness—the Holy Grail.
The bottom line is gratitude and bitterness cannot exist in the same thought. Neither can gratitude and jealousy, disappointment, resentment or greed. How powerful is it to know that when you choose gratitude, you are ousting gratitude’s nemeses. On the flip side, when you mope, regret, wallow, stew, envy, or seethe, gratitude has no choice but to dessert your head and heart, which isn’t good because gratitude has friends you want to hang out with. Not to name drop, but gratitude’s posse includes hope, happiness, confidence, resilience, fulfillment, success and satisfaction, to name a few.
Satisfaction is a big word—an A-lister that can fill emptiness to the brim and provide complete contentment. Satisfaction is the Master Shifu of the “cup runneth over” theory. I have to ask: When is the last time you were 100 percent satisfied? Has that word entered your mind in the last year? Just imagine if you were satisfied with your house, your body, your car, and your job how completely your cup would be “runnething” over! It’s so exciting. But here’s the deal: Being “satisfied, but…” doesn’t count. That’s penny-ante satisfaction, and no one wants a penny-ante life.
This doesn’t mean you can’t dream for a waterfront home or a big promotion at work. All satisfaction asks of us is to take a moment to be happy with what you have right now. Can you write down five things you are satisfied with? Go for 10.
When I start thinking of all the things I’m satisfied with, my mind doesn’t even veer to what I don’t have, what I want or what I’m dissatisfied about. That’s something to be grateful for in and of itself—we can escape constant want, emptiness and lack just by shifting our minds to a state of gratitude.
Oprah Winfrey encouraged us years ago to keep a gratitude journal. She said, “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never have enough.”
I bought a little green gratitude journal a few years back with the intent to write in it every night. I don’t do it every day, but it’s amazing how many things I can come up with to be thankful for when I do. I am convinced living gratefully is the most fulfilling way to move through life. Life can be that simple if you let it. Own it. Be thankful for it. Enjoy it.
Please know, from the bottom of my heart, I am so grateful to each one of you for reading, supporting and enjoying Pink. I never take that for granted, and I never will. As much as I love you, I have to ask WHAT IF you woke up tomorrow with only the things you were grateful for today? Would your life change?
Happy Thanksgiving! May your holiday season delight in the dance of gratitude.