Discovering YOU 21 Day Challenge-Day 20: Gratitude
20. Gratitude, Thankfulness, Appreciation…
One man’s trash is another man’s treasure.
Discovering You… is about understanding what makes you happy and enjoying your life.
Times of change and transition can be viewed as either a pain or a pleasure.
As I navigate my way through a very big period of change, it helps to count my blessings…and they are MANY!
Normally, I do not compare myself to others, but when it comes to being grateful, it is sometimes helpful.
As part of my current transition, I am getting the house I have lived in with my family (and all the accumulated stuff) for 25+ years, ready to sell.
Certain people in my life (some on their way out) call my treasures names (that start with s, but not as kind as ‘stuff’).
Everyone has advice, thoughts, and opinions on what I should do, need to do…
NONE of their opinions matter—just what I believe, want and choose to do.
Instead of looking at all the things in my life as ‘junk or crap’ I have to get rid of, I prefer to see it all as things that have served me and are now available to benefit others.
One of my sisters has dubbed me ‘an office supply hoarder’…
Ok, she may be right about that.
But, think of all the folks who may benefit from me having saved all those cool office supplies.
We can beat ourselves up about things from the past or we can learn from them.
I choose to learn from them and to use them to discover more about me.
What does this have to do with today’s challenge?
How does how I view excess stuff in my household have anything to do with gratitude, thankfulness and appreciation?
Like most things, it is all about our PERSPECTIVE.
I can choose to see anything as a gift or a burden.
• One mother looks at her children and the responsibility she has toward them as her greatest blessing.
• Another mother, in a very similar circumstance, may see only all the things she had to give up when she became a mother.
• One business owner sees competition as more businesses move into ‘his’ small town (not thankful)–there is only one small pie (fear, there is not enough for them AND me).
• Another small business owner sees opportunity, knowing that more businesses moving in means more people are coming and more business for him–the pie is infinite (more business for everyone).
• One child receives many beautiful expensive gifts for her birthday, yet storms off to her room in a huff because she did not get one ‘gadget’ she wanted.
• Another child receives similar gifts and knows how truly loved she is.
• One woman cherishes her treasures (collections of things).
• Another person considers the same things trash (too much unnecessary junk that was a waste of money).
Can you think of any examples of this from your own life experiences?
Have you ever had a problem or bad thing happen to you, that later turned out to be one of the BEST things that ever happened in your life?
Everything happens for a reason.
We have to figure out what that reason is (was)…that IS the blessing.
Every person we encounter comes into our life to show us something.
It is often something about our self.
It is often something we are unwilling or unable to see.
Have you noticed the same type people crossing your path?
This is not an accident.
Here is a small example:
A friend of mine is always falling for the same type of woman. I have lost track of how many now, but that does not really matter. It is a lot.
These women are vain, beautiful, shallow, needy, ‘takers’.
He can not see it, but those around him can.
Why is he attracted to and searching out these types of woman?
Because they are trying to show him that he is NOT vain, shallow, needy or a taker!
He is just the opposite of these things on the outside and on the inside.
He does not think he is enough…so he looks to these ‘beautiful’ women to compensate and demonstrate what he thinks is missing in his life (in him).
Even if he meets a woman who is not these things and has a great heart, like him, he probably will not even notice her.
Not until he looks within and learns to appreciate/love who he already is…who he has always been…and that is always enough!
Maybe this is not a great example, but most of us know someone like this.
We shake our head every time he shows up with a ‘new one’…
Think of the people who keep appearing in your life?
What are they trying to show you?
Hint: If you are judging and making comments about them…guess what?
If you are blaming and making excuses about your reaction…guess what?
LOOK IN THE MIRROR.
Things around us and our reaction is a reflection of what we are inside.
The mirror just shows us…
Be brave enough to look and discover who you ARE!
Be grateful that you have the mental capacity to understand you.
Know how blessed you are to be alive.
Approach each moment knowing it holds infinite possibilities.
DISCOVERING YOU Activity:
1. Make a list of 10 thing you are thankful for (now)!
2. HANG this list where you will see it often (or better yet, carry it with you).
3. Every day, for the next 7 (just a week) days, as soon as you wake up…think of 3 things you are grateful for. Do not let your feet hit the floor until you have taken a minute to think of these things.
4. Every day (depending on what your personal schedule is), before retiring (going to sleep), think of 5 things you appreciate. It is a bonus if you can list things that happened today.
5. Approach something you ‘have to do’ today, with your ‘Gratitude Glasses’ on today.
If you have to go to work and do not LOVE your job, be thankful that you have a job to go to…many folks do not.
If you have to cook dinner and can’t think of what to make, as you peruse the pantry…be grateful that you have food and ingredients to create dinner…for many people do not have enough to eat.
If you are stressed out paying bills…appreciate those who have extended you credit. If you have to downsize your life…be happy for all the people who will benefit from the things you are letting go.
If you have a big transition…be blessed knowing you can do it—you have changed before and you can do it again…think of it as a grand adventure (always something to look forward to).
6. Notice three new things today. Appreciate that you saw them.
7. Thank one person for something today. Smile and really be grateful.
Notice that when you thank someone, you FEEL better.
When you appreciate, really feel grateful inside, you are positively impacting (blessing) the entire Universe. (We are all one…).
Let’s all go out and make this world a better place…it all begins with(in) YOU!
Discovering YOU is the most important thing you can do right now.
Be Loving. Love Being. Be YOU!
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