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Be Grateful – Be Happy

Grateful people are happy people.

Month

January 2014

Perspective

Glass Still Life Perspective is the angle from which we view the world.  Recently, I had a conversation with a dear person in my life and we were discussing our “dark side.”  It is very hard to look at the reality of who we can become when provoked or afraid.  However, when we look honestly at ourselves we can better prepare how we may react in challenging circumstances.  I know that I have at times not acted in a way that I am proud to revisit.  However each experience taught me something about myself and who I am and who I want to be.

I lost someone who I thought was a best friend a year or so ago and it really hurt.  Not because the friendship ended specifically, but because she told me it was me who created “undue stress,” in her life.  After that, I did look long and hard at my needs in friendship and realized that this friendship was not what I thought it was.  My reuniting with a life-long friend after 25 years apart taught me that.  This dear friend showed me that friendship doesn’t have to be hard or constantly connected.  We rarely speak over the phone but we check in with each other, often at times when we just need that connection, just to let each know we are here and think they are special.

After starting to focus on gratitude, I discovered there are lots of things that are good in my life.  Even the little things are worth celebrating.

This quote says much:

Laugh when you can,
apologize when you should,
and let go of what you can’t change.

Kiss slowly,
play hard,
forgive quickly,
take chances,
give everything
and have no regrets.

Life’s too short to be anything…but happy.

– Unknown

Finding Gratitudes when things are bleak.

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Recently my husband and I bought a new home in a new city.  Time was a factor and we thought this house was at least at a point where we wouldn’t have to pour money into it right away.  Unfortunately we were wrong.  The small leak in the garage is not small and not just contained to the garage.  The kitchen didn’t have enough space for even basic pots, pans and dishes, much less pantry storage.  In essence, we bought a money pit.  So, how is it that before I even make my first mortgage payment, I find gratitude in this financial cellar?  Believe me, it is hard.  But I make a conscious effort each day to find even the littlest things to be grateful.

Each day, I log into my Facebook page and I take time to think about things around me, the people I know, the small victories and I write them down.  It helps.  I still have challenges keeping the blues away because Positive Mental Attitude is not my default setting.  But taking the time to be aware that despite the bad, there is good in life, is worth it.

Come on… Be grateful, Be happy?

SanDiegoSunset

Last year, attending a Training Network complimentary Webinar led by Shawn Achor, I began following his social media sources, including the Training Magazine’s mailing list.  As a result, I received an email with an offer to try a happiness experiment and decided to give it a try.

Prior to beginning the experiment I took a survey answering many questions, and I can honestly say, I was not in the most positive head-space.  I was trying to find a new path and new opportunities and things were not going very well.  I had nothing to lose by taking a few minutes of my evening for 14 days.

In order to keep myself on track, I decided to use my Facebook page.  I figured, if my friends saw this, it might keep me honest and committed.  The first few days were quite hard to think of 3 things that weren’t food, clothing, hubby.  But, I stuck with it and after a few days, I was tucking away experiences that I could put on my daily gratitudes.  And… to my surprise, my attitude started to get better.  Things that would make me cry or angry, didn’t have as much impact on my emotions.  It isn’t to say, I don’t have bad days or overreactions; I am simply saying I had a longer fuse.

When I finished the 14 days I shared my thoughts on my Facebook page and I took the closing quiz.  I was so impressed by the results, I even emailed Shawn Achor my feedback.  What struck me was, that I was not only more happy and able to manage the bumps in the daily road, I received some amazing feedback from people who read my posts.  They said, they really appreciated reading them and hoped I would keep going.  I have.  Each night, before I close down the computer, I write down gratitudes.  Some days the gratitudes are small and simple and others I have those really special moments that let me know this world isn’t as bad as the news portrays.

Anyhow, I am sticking with it and, for that, I am grateful.

 

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