I am just delighted to share Ginny Lennox’s inspiring take on gratitude with you!
I started my gratitude practice several years ago and it has made a big difference in my life. I retired seven years ago and six months after retiring my husband went for a routine doctor’s appointment. The internist just had a “feeling” that something was not right so he sent him to a cardiologist. The cardiologist was ready to send him home but he too had a “feeling” that something wasn’t right so he told him to go get lunch and then head over to the Admissions Department at the hospital. They wanted to admit him and run further tests. The tests showed that there was nothing wrong with his heart but that he had a rare lung disease called Primary Pulmonary Hypertension. The pulmonologists were blunt. If he had been diagnosed just a few years earlier, they would have had little to offer. But research was being done and there were medicines now that could slow down the progression of the disease. And so life began to look a lot different than it had just a few months earlier.
This was a new role for me. There were times when I really didn’t know what to say and so whenever our conversation took a turn toward the negative I switched to the positive. If we were complaining about the rain, I would say “Yes, but the flowers need the water.” It didn’t seem to matter what we were talking about something inside me needed to see and hear the positive. I am not saying this was a good way to handle things, it was just my way and fortunately it worked for us. I realized what I was doing and I know some would say I was not allowing myself or my husband to handle all of our feelings. I was even getting tired of hearing myself speak until the day I was the one feeling down and my husband turned things around and pointed out the positive and what we should be grateful for. That’s the day things began to change for both of us. We both began to see all of the things that were in our lives that we could and should be grateful for and that is what we concentrate on.
My gratitude practice has helped me to know more about myself and what is important to me. I’ve learned that it is the simple things that make me happiest and that I am most grateful for. It’s living in the moment and not worrying about what is going to happen next. It’s being with family and friends and writing for my blog. It’s learning to paint or taking a picture early in the morning. It’s an early morning motorcycle ride with my husband. It’s not the next big trip or the next thing I am going to buy that makes me happy. It is family and friends. It is the kindness of strangers that can make the difference in how I feel. It is the beauty of nature, quiet moments, a good cup of coffee, and watching my grandchildren laugh and play that makes me happy. Without my weekly Gratitude Practice I may have known these things intellectually but now I really know and feel what I am most grateful for experiencing each week.
As you go through the week, I would like to encourage you to slow down and really appreciate each and every moment. Then at some time during your week take a minute or two to remind yourself of what you experienced that you are most grateful for. If you are like me, you will begin to see a pattern. You will see what is most important to you. Doing this has changed my life forever. I have a feeling it can do the same for you!
Ginny Lennox, ED.S, a certified Kaizen-Muse Creativity Coach, believes that each and every day is filled with special moments to be enjoyed and treasured. On her blog, Special Moments In Time, she encourages everyone to recognize and celebrate their own special moments each day. If you would like to learn more about Special Moments In Time Creativity Coaching, Ginny can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org