Get Grounded in Gratitude
Get Grounded in Gratitude.... It's here! November! I love this month...partly because this is my birthday month, but mostly because of Thanksgiving - it's my favorite holiday by far. I have wonderful memories of childhood Thanksgiving spent in Redding, CT with tons of aunts, uncles, and cousins and tables set in every room! Later on we gathered around my parents’ table, where pretty much every year they welcomed some 'stray' who didn't have their own family with which to practice gratitude. So, as we welcome another November here's a poem written by our poet laureate Joy Harjo and some thoughts on gratitude.
It's probably not a surprise to you that practicing gratitude has actual physical and mental benefits. One article explains 7 benefits of gratitude. The last benefit really rings true for me:
7. Gratitude increases mental strength. "For years, research has shown gratitude not only reduces stress, but it may also play a major role in overcoming trauma. ...Recognizing all you have to be thankful for – even during the worst times of your life – fosters resilience."
You can read the full article here. …and Remember Resilience. At any age (and especially as we approach our later years) cultivating resilience is really important. You may be thinking I'm crazy to suggest that even during the worst times we should practice gratitude. Here's the thing - suffering is where the real growth happens. Disequilibrium changes us. What doesn't kill you does, in fact make you stronger! I recently had the privilege of meeting Jordan, one of the co-authors and curators of Upwards.Gold. Their site has an amazing collection of resources to cultivate gratitude, compassion, and forgiveness - as well as 40-day courses to explore "the space between who you have been and who you are here to become."