Gratitude in Spite of and Because of the Pandemic
HOPE AND GRATITUDE IN A CHALLENGING TIME
Happy Thanksgiving to those in the US, and here’s to a beautiful day if you are not in the US or are listening to this another day.
Let’s talk about gratitude in a new way, given the crazies of 2020, and how to have it in spite of and because of what we have and are experiencing in the world with the Pandemic.
Gratitude is a word that is often and easily bantered around.
"Start with gratitude. Gratitude gives you more of what you want. Do a daily gratitude journal."
Bleh, bleh, bleh....
What is gratitude, really? And how do we manage to feel grateful when we are in a challenging situation?
Life is 50/50. Always. We have joy, love, peace, happiness. We also have, conversely pain, grief, disappointment, frustration.
We can’t know the bountiful fall harvest without the scorching suns of summer. We can’t know the blooms of spring without the frozen ice of winter.
It gives us lemons, and we get to decide what to do with them.
Covid-19 was certainly not something most of us expected. But, it came, and it's here, even still. It has forever changed our lives in many ways, some we don’t even know yet.
We are left figuring ourselves out, our lives out, our businesses out, in the midst of it.
Some people are thriving and some are struggling. Let’s get you to the side of thriving if you are not.
After a lot of time on the Yoga mat; where I can dive more deeply into my thoughts, feelings and emotions; and time spent in contemplation, journaling and thinking, I came away with those things I am grateful to and for, in spite of and because of, the Pandemic.
First, I finally fully grasp the concept of being still; being quiet; being present and experiencing “enough” in the moment.
I get up earlier, most often before the sun comes up. I enjoy my meditation time in the silence and darkness of the pre-dawn.
It’s a whole new world. The birds who sing before the sun rises; Hootie, or rather 3 owls, who hang out regularly in my tree, on my rooftop, or neighboring one, calling to each other in perfect harmony.
The pink/orange brilliance of the sky as the sun rises, with promise and beauty, as it has for thousands of years.
I am grateful for the people in my life, in new ways. Their strengths and vulnerabilities, as we navigate these waters together.
I am so very grateful for technology. I have been for decades and even more so now as it keeps us connected; and keeps my business and many others thriving.
I am so grateful for the personal growth work I have done for nearly 25 years. It has helped me stay calm, logical and simply figure things out.
Some words and concepts that have come to mind for me over this last year are - loss of control; the present moment; gripping tightly; hurry up and wait; no where to go and all the time in the world to get there; mind mastery; release; clutter; priorities; values; faith; love; peace; joy; gratitude; acceptance; 50/50; good vs bad; movement; possibilities; being part of the solution…
I am grateful I have learned to Let go and Let God - simply relaxing the grip on those things that I don’t control, and never have been in control of. I just thought I did.
Slowing down. I am grateful to be pacing myself more and chilling. Nightly soaks in the bathtub, meditating and spending time intentionally thinking about how I spend my time, and life. And, what actions I take in my business.
I have released the hustle and grind and am working less, and achieving more.
As Albert Einstein said - if I have an hour to solve a problem, I spend 55 minutes thinking about it and 5 minutes solving it.
Thinking intentionally is freedom. It is pure freedom.
Finally, I am grateful for you. Sharing this time and this journey with me. Though we have possibly and probably never met, we are kindred spirits. We have like minds and goals. We are entrepreneurs, risk takers and movers and shakers.
We are human, real, authentic and vulnerable.
Sometime, we can lose sight of feeling grateful when things aren't going like we want them to -
We Struggle in business.
People say no; people quit; everyone else seems to have an easier time.
We feel challenged, don't have time; don't have finances.
Thoughts are things. We create the things, or reality of our life by the thoughts we have and the actions or inactions we take.
We attract what we focus on. Focus on lack and scarcity, get more of the same. Wishing is not enough. Feeling abundant, even while lacking abundance and expressing gratitude for what you have and where you are now will bring what you want into your life.
Sound airy fairy? Well, I know this to be true as I have experienced it myself. Once I began to pay attention to my thoughts….everything changed.
Today, I practice deep waves of appreciation and gratitude multiple times throughout the day. First thing, before I get out of bed, last thing before I go to sleep, in my mind, my journal, as I hit the yoga mat and at other times throughout the day.
You may be thinking, "WHY am I struggling and why is it taking me so long to get where I want to go…"
It's not because you don't want it enough; or aren't smart enough; or not worthy and so on.
It's because you are creating resistance through your own thoughts, especially the ones you aren't even aware of!
Here is the key to life and business and getting what you want in both -
A consistent formula gives you consistent results.
The law of attraction is the most powerful law in the universe. That which is like onto itself is drawn. In other words - you get what you focus on; you get back what you give out.
The easiest way to begin to change things is starting with gratitude for where you are, everything happening to me is happening for me; and finding acceptance and the gift in what you currently have, and NOT the lack of what you want.
I experienced something a few years back that rocked my boat, and I quickly fell into scarcity thinking and negativity.
I pulled myself out of it by -
a) becoming aware of my thoughts and feelings
b) thinking and feeling deliberately and intentional and shifting what needed to be shifted.
c) expressing gratitude each day for having "enough."
d) using questions to validate or invalidate what I thought I was experiencing.
Is this true? Right now? How do I know? What does it mean? About me? Does this serve me? How would I like to think and feel? How do I shift to that?
Close your eyes, and imagine something you are grateful for. Feel appreciation and gratitude for 30 seconds or more. With your eyes closed, just focus on those feelings.
Then, move onto something else. Just try it and let me know
So, as we embrace the Thanksgiving week here in the US, please know I am grateful for you, and I am thanking you right now, for being here and being part of this amazing journey with me.
Do you have a question for me? DM me on Instagram @jackieulmer
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