January 6, 2019
“He is a wise man who does not grieve for the things which he has not, but rejoices for those which he has.”
The holidays are behind us and we begin a new decade. It is the beginning of the rest of our lives. I hope you are like I am and plan on enjoying the days ahead. In truth I am somewhat amazed and grateful that I have made it this far.
I find that I have become more grateful for what I still can do and with what I have. I am fortunate to have joined a retirement community where many folks have learned how to make the best of what they have rather than focusing on what they no longer have. Have you noticed that the happiest people seem to find joy in their everyday life, I have.
I think that gratefulness is the key to my happiness as it is for so many others. Recently Angel Chernoff wrote an article on the value of gratitude. Here in part is what she shared.
How to Force Yourself to Be More Grateful
In the end, the secret to being grateful is no secret. You choose to be grateful. Then you do it again and again. If you forget, begin again.
- Practice a private, evening gratitude ritual. – Here’s a super simple, five-minute, evening gratitude ritual: Every evening before you go to bed, write down three things that went well during the day and their causes. Simply provide a short, causal explanation for each good thing.
That’s it. We spend tens of thousands of dollars on expensive electronics, big homes, fancy cars, and lavish vacations hoping for a boost of happiness. This is a simple, free alternative, and it works.
- Practice giving thanks publicly. – Although gratitude comes from within, the public expression of gratitude is important too. In his best selling book, “Authentic Happiness,” the renowned positive psychologist Martin Seligman gives some practical suggestions on how to do this. He recommends that we ritualize the practice of expressing gratitude in letters to friends, family, coworkers, and other people who we interact with in our community.
- Practice reflecting on the little things you are grateful for. – It’s fairly easy to remember to be grateful for the big and obvious things that happen—a new addition to the family, a great promotion at work, a significant business breakthrough, etc. But the happiest people find ways to give thanks for the little things too. Ponder these perspective-shifting points from an article Marc wrote a while back:
- You are alive.
- You didn’t go to sleep hungry last night.
- You didn’t go to sleep outside.
- You had a choice of what clothes to wear this morning.
- You haven’t spent a minute in fear for your life.
- You know someone who loves you.
- You have access to clean drinking water.
- You have access to medical care.
- You have access to the Internet.
- You can read.
Be honest: when was the last time you were grateful for simply being alive, or going to sleep with a full belly? More specifically, think of all the little things you experience—the smell of a home-cooked meal, hearing your favorite song when it randomly comes on the radio, seeing a marvelous sunset, etc.
Pay attention, and be grateful.
Truly, the richest human isn’t the one who has the most, but the one who needs less. Wealth is a mindset. Want less and appreciate more today. And remember, the best time to focus on being grateful is when you don’t feel like it. Because that’s when doing so can make the biggest difference.
“Gratitude turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos into order, confusion into clarity…it makes sense of our past, brings peace for today, and creates a vision for tomorrow.
Teacher to class: “Give me a sentence with a direct object.”
Student: “Everybody thinks our teacher is beautiful.”
Teacher: “Why, thank you. But what is the direct object?”
Student: “A good report card.”
Don’t worry that children never listen to you. Worry that they are always watching you.
Best ‘Out of Office’ Automatic Email Replies:
- I am currently out of the office at a job interview and will reply to you if I fail to get the position. Please be prepared for my mood.
- You are receiving this automatic notification because I am out of the office. If I was in, chances are you wouldn’t have received anything at all.
- Sorry to have missed you, but I’m at the doctor’s having my brain and heart removed so I can be promoted to our management team.
- I will be unable to delete all the emails you send me until I return from vacation. Please be patient, and your mail will be deleted in the order it was received.
- Thank you for your email. Your credit card has been charged $5.99 for the first 10 words and $1.99 for each additional word in your message.
- The email server is unable to verify your server connection. Your message has not been delivered. Please restart your computer and try sending again. (The beauty of this is that when you return, you can see who did this over and over and over…)
- Thank you for your message, which has been added to a queuing system. You are currently in 352nd place, and can expect to receive a reply in approximately 19 weeks.
- Hi, I’m thinking about what you’ve just sent me. Please wait by your PC for my response.
- I’ve run away to join a different circus.
- I will be out of the office for the next two weeks for medical reasons. When I return, please refer to me as ‘Lucille’ instead of Steve.
My friend has a baby. I’m recording all the noises he makes so later I can ask him what he meant.
“Mr. Chilton,” the analyst said, “I think this will be your last visit.”
“Does that mean I’m cured?” he asked.
“For all practical purposes, yes,” she said. “I think we can safely say that your kleptomania is now under control. You haven’t stolen anything in two years, and you seem to know where the kleptomania came from.”
“Well, that’s terrific, Doctor. Before I go, I’d like to tell you something. Although our relationship is strictly professional, it’s been one of the most rewarding of my life. I wish I could do something to repay you for helping me.”
“You’ve paid my fee,” the doctor said. “That’s the only responsibility you have.”
“I know,” Chilton said. “But isn’t there some personal favor I could do for you?”
“Well,” the doctor said, “I’ll tell you what. If you ever suffer a relapse, my son could use a nice portable color television.”
Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently.
As the passengers settled in on a West Coast commuter flight a flight attendant announced, “We’d like you folks to help us welcome our new co-pilot. He’ll be performing his first commercial landing for us today, so be sure to give him a big round of applause when we come to a stop.”
The plane made an extremely bumpy landing, bouncing hard two or three times before taxiing to a stop. Still, the passengers applauded. Then the attendant’s voice came over the intercom, “Thanks for flying with us. And don’t forget to let our co-pilot know which landing you liked best.”
Right actions for the future are the best apologies for wrong ones in the past.
The tourist in London climbed into a cab and noticed by the license that his cab driver’s name was Winston Churchill. Trying to make conversation, he said, “I see your name is Winston Churchill.”
The driver simply said, “Yep. That’s my moniker.”
The passenger, not willing to give up yet on some banter, said, “That’s a pretty famous name.”
The driver responded with, “As well it should be too. I’ve been driving a cab here for over forty years!”
“It’s a funny thing about life, once you begin to take note of the things you are grateful for, you begin to lose sight of the things that you lack.”
Management is not responsible for duplicates from previous dailies. The editor is somewhat senile.
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