Giving Thanks for our Blessings…Posted: November 24, 2016
Below is the entry for today’s 24-Day mindful Gratitude Challenge. If you have not participated yet, there’s no time like the present to begin… and begin right where you are. Start today and then check back to last weeks’ and the previous weeks’ entries. I’m sure you’ll find something that will resonate with you. And know that as you cultivate gratitude, you are strengthening your well-being, immune system, emotional mood, and social connections. So on this day, and all days, be well and be GRATEFUL!
NOVEMBER 24: 24-Day mindful GRATITUDE CHALLENGE * This is It!*
Welcome to this moment! You have arrived, and you are home. In your body, in your breath and in this moment, as we begin our 24th Day (and last day) of the mindful GRATITUDE CHALLENGE. As the name of today’s challenge suggests, today we will cultivate gratitude for this moment, as this is where the living takes place, and not in the future or the past.
“Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That’s why it is called the present.”
~Bil Keane, Joan Rivers, Kung Fu Panda, and many others
On this day, when the United States celebrates a day of being grateful, let us take the present moment to be thankful for what we have, and all we have experienced that has lead us here. Meeting yourself right where you are, take inventory of your present life. Whatever measure of breath, health, relationships, and job or life satisfaction you are experiencing right now, acknowledging it for being present in your life to the degree that it is. Taking inventory of your past—where you cannot live any more, but where you can reflect and bring some gratitude towards, as all the experiences in your past have lead up to this moment. Consider the words of Entrepreneur, Business Man and Life Changer, Steve Jobs:
“You can’t connect the dots looking forward;
you can only connect them looking backwards.
So you have to trust that the dots will somehow connect in your future.
You have to trust in something-your gut, destiny, life, karma, whatever”
By connecting the dots, we see that all experiences have lessons and trajectories that we may not have predicted in the present. It’s only by looking back that we see the thread. And it’s by looking back that we can put trust in the future, as Steve says. Knowing that life will unfold as it needs to, and that all we need to do is trust in our decisions and actions, can help us from living in the future and ruminating over the what-if scenarios.
Taking inventory of this moment, bring gratitude for whatever is here—in your thoughts, emotions, sensations. Giving gratitude for being able to experience whatever it is that is before us: whether we are gathering with friends and family today, or finding solace in our own presence; whether we are in the heights of happiness and joy, or the lows of sadness. Let’s bring gratitude for being right where we are in life, for all experiences are fleeting, and have made all the difference in our journey.
“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, and that has made all the difference.”
Bring gratitude for the blessings of nourishment in the form of people, food, activities, purpose, and dreams. Bring gratitude for how we experience this world, and bask in the gift of today! Today is all we have, and is where we can make a conscious choice. As Thich Nhat Hanh says, “This is it.” And as Mary Oliver says, “What will you do with your one wild and precious life?” Putting them together consider, “What will you do with your one wild and precious moment?” Today is a gift…