Being a Canadian living in the States I get 2 Thanksgivings. Life is good! (I don’t even eat turkey :) )
As Bill and I create our dream together we have so much to be grateful for. We have also had a bunch of challenges and disappointments and set-backs. We could easily focus on the problems. This is the typical glass half full or half empty dilemma.
So, we all hear about being thankful, about gratefulness practices and journals. Then, why am I writing about this today?
We all need reminders. Opportunities to reset what we get focused on. I don’t think that 2 “Thanksgivings” are enough.
There is a wonderful video circulating on Facebook about a family celebrating the holidays. Many of the things that are just a normal part of their life are wrapped up - the car, family members, etc. The joy on the father’s face as he unwraps the things, that are already a part of his life, is wonderful.
Listening to a talk show on NPR yesterday about happiness and the happiest cities in America revealed some interesting facts. One was that new things that we get, thinking they will make us happy, do bring a new level of enjoyment but the “shelf life” of that is about 9 months. What lasts is choices in relationships and well-being.
So, if we want more to be thankful for we need to do more things:
What we develop and put effort and time in to now will be there for us in the future. What do you want to have in the years to come? How can you change how you spend your energy now to have more of that? (Good friendships take time and intentional effort to nurture, health doesn’t just happen, it is the result of dozens of daily choices over a long period of time.)
Learning the skill of re-framing is a life-changer. I believe at the core of optimism is this ability to look at the same situation as someone else but see the good and the possibilities.
Here’s a dare for you. Take 5 of the hard things that have happened to you in the past and take time to write 3 good or positive things that have come out of each. This is never to minimize the pain of those things. I do not believe in repressing or ignoring our grief. This is about seeing how the hard stuff opens up doors to new possibilities.
Happy Thanksgiving Y’all - whichever country you live life in!
Until next time,
Marilyn Orr is a Professional Certified Coach credentialed by the International Coach Federation, who, through her coaching business “Capacity Building Coaching”, thrives on building both personal and organization capacity through leadership coaching and development.