It’s impossible to write a column this week and not focus on gratitude.
Being grateful for what you have, as any motivational speaker will tell you, is the number one way to open up to the abundance that is all around you and to make room for more of it to come your way. If that sounds a little esoteric, consider it this way: what you look for, you find. If you’re in a state of happy, expectant gratitude, you’ll be more open to seeing things, as “small” as they may be, that you treasure and that put a little kick in your step.
Think of it like a radio. (Someone explain radio to the Gen Z kids out there.) When you’re grateful, you tune into the good things that are going on in your life, and tune out the voice in your head that may be looking for something else or complaining about what’s not there. The nice trick is that you can’t really tune into both at the same time. So there’s an element of choice there that puts you in the driver’s seat, better able to set the tone for how you experience your day.
That’s an approach that you can start today, no matter where you are in your life.
But wait, there’s more!
Another perspective of gratitude that I think is powerful is the one in which you use the feeling of gratitude to bake up something really delicious for your future. A preacher I heard on the radio (radio, again!) put it like this: what kind of life would really light you up and overwhelm you with gratitude? He said that we shouldn’t ask God what we should do with our lives; God is asking us that. And the way we know we’re on the right track – our answer – is that we should do whatever makes us feel – you guessed it! – grateful.
A caveat here. Sometimes it’s easy to respond to “What would make you burst with gratitude?” with surface-y things: a bigger apartment, more ca$h money, more recognition at work. An Emmy, a Grammy, an Oscar and a Tony. Oprah’s direct number. Or at least Gayle’s. (Right?! Just me?) Those things can be important, to certain degree, but dig deeper. You’re only talking with yourself here.
Beyond the shallow stuff that can be rearranged pretty easily (minus the EGOT, that’s hard), what kind of impact do you want to have in the world that, if you were filled with superhuman powers and were somehow able to do them, would fill you with awe and gratitude?
What kinds of people are you interacting with? What kinds of discussions are you having? What problems are you solving? You get some news. You text your best friend “OMG!!!” What led to that?
Think about what that “OMG!!! Moment” would be for you. And guess what? Maybe that’s what you need to devote more time and energy to, right now, as you build your future in your head (and heart) first.
We have a couple of milestones to hit before 2017 gets here, with the holidays and all, but it also could be the perfect time to be thinking about and planning for what your OMG Moment would be for you.
What is that moment for you, and what are some immediate, simple steps you could take to get there? It might be about filling in gaps of information that you just don’t have right now. Could you take a class? Ask a friend who’s great at social media how they do it? Reconnect with that writer-friend of yours, so you can collaborate on something fun?
Before the New Year gets here and everyone makes the I-wanna-get-healthy resolutions, have a better one up your sleeve. What about something along the lines of “I want to make the world a little bit better by….”
We’re about to enter the time of year where not too much is expected of us, beyond the usual holiday shenanigans. Although it can be busy, it can also be a great time to dream a little, brainstorm a little, connect with people a lot, and get the grind you wanna be on in 2017 in progress.
Happy Thanksgiving and Happy Grinding!
But wait, there’s more, again!
I want to tell you about a 2017 project of mine! I’m working with a team to create what we’re calling “the talk show of the future.” Don’t worry, that’s not the real title! Basically – we know that more than four million hours of content is uploaded to YouTube EVERY DAY, so we want to the work we create to be something that’s worth adding into the mix.
We’re starting off the talk show by not talking… But by listening! During this discovery phase, we’re asking people what it is they want to see at www.TalkShow2017.com.
There, you’ll find a simple survey and a little more about what we think is important: putting people first, not overloading it with too much information, and focusing on conversations that help us learn, laugh and make life a little better.