Today is Thanksgiving here in the U.S. It’s our national day of gratitude, a day to pause and count our blessings as well as to gather with family and friends and stuff our bellies with an over-abundance of delicious food.
So what are YOU grateful for?
If you’re like many folks, you’ll probably acknowledge your health and well-being, the relationships of your heart, the purposeful work you get to do, the incredible freedom you possess, the fact that you can make choices most of the world can’t, the multi-faceted abundance in your life, and more.
When asked what gratitude is, the most obvious response is that it’s appreciating what you have, what you’ve been given, what you’ve manifested – the many blessings already in your life that you may at times take for granted. And that surely is an expression of gratitude, a very essential and satisfying one.
But it actually goes much deeper than that. The incomparable poet, David Whyte, says:
Gratitude is not a passive response to something given to us. Gratitude is being awake in the presence of everything that lives within and without us. Gratitude is not something that is shown after the event. It is the deep, a priori state of attention that shows we understand and are equal to the gifted nature of life.
Gratitude is really an orientation to life. It begins with the recognition that Life itself is a profound gift – the whole of life and each and every moment in life.
It’s a blessing you didn’t earn, create, or accomplish. It’s simply available to you because you are an inherent part of the great web of Life. You belong to Life.
From a deeper perspective, gratitude is really about your relationship with the sacred.
And like all relationships, they come into their fullness and bless us most abundantly when we give them our consistent attention. You can’t ignore someone for years and then suddenly expect them to be your best friend.
So taking things for granted for 364 days of the year and then being grateful on this one day of Thanksgiving won’t infuse the whole of your life with the sense of awe, possibility, and grace that comes from living in daily gratitude.
Buddhist scholar Joanna Macy says that gratitude is a stance of the soul. This feels so true! Gratitude connects you to your joy-filled, wonder-infused essence and brings you home to your true power. And out of that, you create your life.
In fact, gratitude is the ground from which you create all measure of success in your life. It’s the fertile soil where you root into the truth
of who you are, germinate the seeds of your desire and vision, grow the many relationships that will nourish you, and unfold your great work into a flourishing endeavor that blesses you, others, and the world.
When things get challenging, as they inevitably do in the ebb and flow of life and business, rather than allow yourself to spiral down into what you don’t have, into what’s not working, into how hard things are, engaging in a gratitude practice is a profound way to stay present and in the field of possibility.
And when you do that, more becomes possible. Honestly, if you want to create magic in your life, inhabit an attitude of gratitude. It’s simple and doesn’t cost anything to do.
Not only will it illuminate the sacred possibility already present in each moment, but it opens the flow for more to come your way. It takes you out of the stifling worry about how things might turn out in the future, and places you present and available to the wonder of what actually is right now.
It turns out that the flow from wonder to gratitude is a two-way street. So ask yourself how you can open to gratitude by embracing the wonder and beauty in this moment.
One great way is to tune your inner radar for moments that stop you in your tracks and take your breath away. It could be the astonishing play of color at sunrise, or the intoxicating fragrance of a flower, or the joyous expression of a beloved.
These breathtaking moments are a miracle in which your heart opens in awe and wonder, and gratitude flows
in. And the truth is you can actually cultivate them daily.
David Whyte says that “Being unappreciative means we are simply not paying attention”. So pay attention.
Make a decision to be present in the moment as often as you can, to experience the beauty that’s always there, to embrace an attitude of gratitude.
You’re human, so you’ll forget, and then you’ll remember, and forget, and remember. It’s all good.
Just know that if you want more wonder in your life, start with gratitude. And if you want to be in gratitude, open to wonder. This is
how you infuse your life with true magic. This is how your life becomes magical.
And remember, you are magnificent. I bow to you for having the courage to say yes to your calling. I’m so grateful that you’ve found your way into my world and that you trust me to share my ideas, perspectives, and heart with you. I’m blessed by your presence and honored that I get to serve you on your journey of unfolding your great work. I love you!
On this day of gratitude, may you be blessed now more than ever! Have a beautiful day!
Susanna Maida, Ph.D., CPCC
Visionary Business Weaver
mentoring visionary entrepreneurs to create thriving world-changing businesses while leading from the sacred feminine