• Something for you to consider today – feeling grateful for the things that you don’t have or for things that didn’t happen.

    Often, I find myself focusing on things that I don’t have…which leads to the feeling that I need to buy more, become more, give more, have more, be more and everything more, more, more.

    Then, at times I am mindful enough to tune into the things I already have.  For instance, I am SO grateful for my husband, Glen, our beautiful, sweet, well-behaved and kind dog, my job, my students, my teachers, my meditation practice, my health, clean air and drinking water, my vehicles, my garden, my boss, health insurance, my hair stylist, my therapist, my friends and acquaintances, my dentist and doctors, my emotions, my cousins and remaining aunts, my body, my voice, my home, and even my pain and suffering.

    However, I infrequently think about being grateful for things that didn’t happen!

    The accident that didn’t happen, a medical diagnosis I didn’t get, the drama that didn’t come my way, poor weather on my wedding day, flooding that didn’t happen, not getting fired from a job when I probably should have, an argument I had anticipated that didn’t manifest or perhaps a panic or anxiety attack that didn’t arise in a situation that would normally trigger one. Just peeking at the things that didn’t occur can feel overwhelming. My mind can’t hold it all, to be honest.

    These glimpses can generate in me – a feeling like I won the lottery and lands me right in the place where I am, just as I am – enough and content.  I am so grateful to be right here, typing this message to you! Your presence is important. Please know this and feel into this. And when difficult situations do arise, we can be grateful for them too. The painful and hard times, when we are rubbing up against our edges or our less flattering thoughts and emotions – these are the times when we have an opportunity to learn, practice and grow and where we gain wisdom. We can assume the radical attitude of being thankful for it ALL.

    So, this holiday, enjoy what you do have and see if you can appreciate what you don’t. May a glimpse of gratitude spark a fire of contentment!

    I so appreciate this quote from Victor Frankl, “The one thing you can’t take away from me is the way I choose to respond to what you do to me.” Imagine Thanksgiving dinners across the country with everyone at the table taking responsibility for how they interact with one another! May this Thanksgiving provide us with mindfulness of the choice we each have to pause before responding … and that it is up to each of us to consciously create the world we seek in each action we take. 

    ~ Cheers,