JOURNAL PROMPT: April 3, 2022 – What are you most grateful for … ?

I guess it depends on where I am setting my gaze, but there are so many, many, many things to be grateful for … on so many levels … micro, meso and macro. I don’t even think I could create a specific list that fully encompasses or adequately exhausts my appreciation for all the ‘beings’, ‘doings’ and ‘havings’ that shape my life and my experience of things.

I remember many years ago reading a couple of amazing books both written by M. J. Ryan focused upon the power of gratitude. “Attitudes of Gratitude” was an exceptional invitation to hone the lens through which I chose to see the world. I highlighted so much in that book that the pages were yellow. It was a game changer for me.

Another really lovely book filled with invitations to experience the world through lens of gratitude is “A Grateful Heart”.  It is a book of ‘blessings’ upon which to reflect as an evening ‘grace’ before meals. I didn’t use them in that fashion. I tended to use them as morning meditations … inspiring thoughts to underpin my days.

Anyway … I share this because maybe the thing I am most grateful for is that fact that I choose to look with grateful eyes. We typically find whatever it is that we are looking for. If we are looking for what is right, we will find it. If we are looking for what is wrong, we will find that too. I caught an episode of “Oprah” many decades ago in which she spoke about developing a daily gratitude practice. She stated that it had changed her life. I was inspired by that thought. I determined that if it was good enough for Oprah … it would be good enough for me.

So, way back in 1999, I bought a luxurious leather bound journal and started recording my appreciations into it. Every day I jotted down five things I was grateful for … and … I made it a rule that I could not say the same thing twice. So, at the risk of having to repeating myself, I noticed that I started consciously seeking things each day that I could record into my list the next morning.

It was the most amazing thing! I started to recognize all the things that previously escaped my awareness. I became far more conscious about the things that were going well and right, rather than the wrong and bad eclipsing my gaze. This shift in focus generated positive neural pathways for me that got myelinated each and every day. The more I did it, the easier it got.

I recorded my ‘gratitudes’ faithfully for years … and then … fell away from it for some years … and then came back to it again. As you can see, I had determined my 2020 vision was going to be set on “Seeing the Gifts.” If only I had known how difficult but necessary that was going to become ………..

Yes. I am most grateful for my gratitude practice and the way it has shaped my gaze. Even though I am not writing it down each day anymore, I find that my brain is still cued to notice the things that are going well, to see the gifts in my challenges and to bring light to dark … and even … to notice the things that I don’t want, that I don’t have. And, for all of THAT, I am most and ever grateful.

With heartfelt appreciation, 💖 Karen 💖

Little Miracles …

May you find many little  miracle moments sprinkled along your path today ...

May you find many little miracle moments sprinkled along your path today … With warmest smiles, Karen

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