A New Year is upon us, 2014! I’m guessing that some of us will strive to set goals for ourselves. Like “I’m gonna loss the 20lbs this time,” “I’m gonna take the long overdue vacation this year,” ”I’m gonna commit to a work-out regimen. It’s only 25 minutes!” “I’m gonna finish or start the home improvement or whatever improvement, for sure!” However, how many times have we started only to fall flat time and time again? Many, right? I’ve found setting such lofty goals can put too much pressure on us and usually leaves us disappointed. So to avert this, I’ve made it a practice to treat every day as though it is the 1st of the New Year. And why not? Isn’t each and every day as precious as the next? Isn’t each and every day the beginning of something new? And isn’t seeing things this way much more empowering over the alternative?
Now, I understand that many people unwittingly wait till the 1st of the New Year because there is a feeling of renewed hope. We may even believe such hope is not available in a so-called ordinary day, because ordinary days are therefor the mundane day-to-day stuff like work, so we can pay our bills. But, this is not true. As a matter of fact, the opposite is true. Each and every day delivers equal new possibilities. We simply have to change our mindset about it. I’ve found the one secret that allows me to continuously move in this general direction. Are you ready for it? Are you really ready? In one word it is GRATITUDE.
Food for thought:
You may be thinking. I already knew that. That’s nothing new. Yes, that may all be true. Gratitude is not a new concept, but let me ask you one question. How often does it live through you and not you for it? By this I mean, think of all the tasks that became second nature when initially focus was required. For example, think of when you first learned to drive a car, and months, or even weeks later, it became easy. It became second nature because you no longer had to think about it, in order to actually do it. This is letting it live you. So how too(for those who do drive) can you make gratitude your second nature? How can gratitude live you and the world would know it, by the way it radiates out of you.
What you can do to wisely choose now:
Find obscure ways to be thankful and couple this concerted effort with repetition. For example, instead of giving thanks for the beautiful red dress you found on sale, maybe say “I am so thankful for the colors that add beauty and draw forth distinct examples like this red dress.” Or instead of saying I appreciate having a job, say, perhaps, “I am so thankful for whatever force allows my body to function without me having to think about it and has taken me through another day at my job.” How awesome! Additionally, a person suddenly without health would most likely appreciate good health more than when it was available, correct? Yes. Don’t take anything for granted. Be thankful now. We all don’t know what life has in store for us but practicing gratitude will always give us more to be thankful for. Moreover, you don’t need to say any of this out loud if you don’t wish to. Simply embracing the thanksgiving is enough.
Why this helps:
This helps because it forces our minds to be more present, creative, and experience appreciation more deeply. It is easy to state the obvious thoughts, but only by expressions of gratitude can we develop and embrace this process naturally. Conjuring unique and new ways will assist us in mastery.
So let me kick off your year with this reminder. There is a saying that I am sure many of us are familiar with: “The journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step.” Let’s take the literal example of running a marathon, a very demanding and practice driven endeavor. What do you think most, if not all participants would tell themselves as they are running along? They would tell themselves, “If I can just take one more step, and another, and another, then eventually I will arrive at the finish line.” And what do you think is the most obvious thing that happens as each step is being taken? Yes, you guessed it. There is a sentiment of gratitude. In all endeavors and with no exceptions, this holds true. So awaken and find even the smallest of blessings in each and every single day as it begins…it is never too late or too early to start. Happy New Year today and every day!!!