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Attitude of Gratitude

Are you an Eeyore woe-is-I kind of person, or are you more of a bouncy Tigger?

 

I submit to you that an attitude of gratitude will give you a more Positive Mental Attitude (PMA).  There is a lot of research to support this theory. 

 

Some researchers suggest keeping a gratitude journal in which you can write things you are grateful for.  I don't necessarily believe you need to write these down, but I have practiced finding at least one thing every single day for which I am grateful.  The big, ongoing, obvious things don't count; find something other than "my family," or "my home."  Some days it is a struggle, and the best you can come up with might be, "I'm thankful I didn't break my favorite coffee cup today."

 

Gratitude is a choice.  YOU can opt to focus on the negative or on the positive.

 

One night, I came out of the building where I had a class.  Pulling out of the driveway, I realized, "I think I have a flat tire."  I pulled over and discovered, sure enough, the tire was flat.  Not just a little low, but riding on the rim flat.  I could have chosen to lament, "Now what do I do?  I could call my husband to come and get me, but then this car would still be 35 miles away in Wood River.  I could call AAA and wait an hour for the tow truck."  Instead, I CHOSE to be thankful Casey's had a free air pump.  (I think it's ridiculous to have to pay a couple bucks for a little phfft of air, plus you usually have to have a credit card to do it.)  I was thankful the free air pump at Casey's was not broken (as it often is).  I was thankful I had a tire gauge in the car--and knew how to use it.  I put air in the tire and drove to Firestone where it could be fixed.

 

In 2017, my brother-in-law



, barely 40 years old, succumbed to cancer.  While I grieved for the loss of a loved one and considered the unfairness of a life ending halfway before it should have, I was comforted by the gratitude that he died peacefully drugged against pain and in the company of loved ones.

 

One neighbor spends a lot of time planting spring flowers.  The blossoming of hyacinths and tulips and daffodils makes me happy whenever I drive by.  Our rambunctious puppy didn't rip anything apart one day.  A specialty ingredient for a distinct dessert for coffee hour was in stock at the Asian market.  A stranger gave me a coupon at the drug store for the one item I needed. 

 

If you need help expressing (or remembering to express) gratitude, a Blessing Bracelet might be the inspiration you need.  Whenever the bracelet is worn, founder of Blessing Bracelet (theblessingbracelet.com) Dawn Sprong encourages the "acknowledgement of one blessing for your life for each large bead or pearl on the bracelet.  Each time you are drawn to the bracelet, silently find four people or things to be grateful for...The more you wear the bracelet and the more blessings you find, the more you will be blessed. In one year, if followed, you will be aware of a profound change in your life."

 

Be grateful.

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