Monday, April 8, 2013

How to Find Happiness A-Z: G

Image courtesy of freedigitalphotos.net
Which is it? Half full or half empty?

In my first post on happiness, we talked about attitude. Well, this is part two.

The Attitude of Gratitude.

One of my favorite books as a kid was It's Not Easy Being a Bunny. Even if I didn't love rabbits (which I did), I would have loved this story. PJ Funny Bunny is so fed up with his life--his hundreds of siblings and having to eat cooked carrots every night--that he decides to hit the road and find a better family.

He joins a family of bears, moose, possums, birds, beavers, and finally skunks before realizing none of them are right for him. At the end of the story he gratefully runs back to his family, embracing all their eccentricities and foibles.

I think we're often like PJ, too close to the wallpaper to see the amazing pattern. If we can step back to appreciate the unique beauty that defines our lives, we'll find the insight to appreciate even the difficult times. In an effort to find the good during rough patches, I often rely on my journal. At the end of each day, I take ten minutes, think about everything that happened, and find a few things to be truly grateful for. As with all good habits, gratitude takes training. It really is an attitude, and practice makes perfect.

AND, a little known secret, the grateful ones are the ones who receive the most.

At least in my family, the kid who's the most grateful is the one who tends to get spoiled the most. Writers who express their thanks for a follow or book purchase are viewed in a brighter light. Friends who thank me for my time are the ones I'm inclined to invest the most time in. Think about it.

Gratitude really is one of the key proponents to finding happiness, so are you brave enough to take the challenge? Will you join me for the next month, recording 5 things you're grateful for each day? Meet me back here on May 6th to chat about our discoveries! *rubbing hands in anticipation*

And in the meantime, go eat some cheese, eh?

30 comments:

  1. I'm grateful that you are reminding us to be grateful, lol! Thanks! (:

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  2. Grateful today for getting home early and browsing some A to Z blogs. Like your theme, but I'm afraid I really hate cheese:-)

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    1. *gasp* Dagger to the heart! ...
      ...
      ...
      Well, if you can at least appreciate the symbolism, that'll have to do.
      ...hates cheese?
      I'm grateful today for people who are honest enough to admit the truth, even when it goes contrary to your own convictions. ;)

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  3. Gratitude is amazing, and even moreso when someone shows their gratitude towards you- best feeling in the world!!!

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    1. Agreed--especially when it's your kids. Of course, I get rather bashful when someone (outside my family) starts thanking me in person. I'd rather they just grin and pat me on the back. Written thanks? That's totally doable. You don't get to see me blush.

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  4. EEK!! It's Not Easy Being a Bunny is one of my favorite PBs!! I used to read it to the kiddos all the time. Awesome!!

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  5. I remember reading somewhere (maybe a devotional book?) that the biggest block to gratitude is pride. When we proudly believe we deserve more, we can't enjoy and be thankful for what we do have. That was a real eye-opener!

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  6. Ahh! Gratitude! Yes, I like to stop and be grateful. And I'm grateful that you stopped by to visit my blog!

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    1. Ditto, Roberta. I really enjoyed your post.

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  7. Loved your post! I do agree, I think we do more and give more for those who show it really mattered to them. If it makes no difference, why do it? We have a culture that tends to 'look a gift horse in the mouth,' and I think genuine appreciation is so rare that it is becoming a novelty.

    Thanks for visiting my blog!

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    1. Well I think even if people don't express their gratitude, it makes a difference in us--going out of our way to do something for someone else. It sure is nice though when one of my littles throws their arms around my neck and tells me thank you. *heart warming*

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  8. What a lovely post. It is good to be reminded to count our blessings because too often we forget how good we really have it. I wish I could commit to listing five things every day, but I am afraid life is too hectic at the moment. NOT that I won't think about it --for a few days, anyway! :) Thanks for the visit to Zoe Cottage!
    tm

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    1. And thanks for the return visit! Hey, if you can only get a couple days in, I'll take it!

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  9. Very thoughtful post.I love the sound of that children's book.
    Anne/Is Anyone There

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  10. Wonderful post on gratitude Crystal. I too turn to my journal to sort things out.
    Thanks for your encouraging post.

    Blessings,
    Margot at A Devotional Mosaic and Spark My Creativity

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  11. PJ! My daughter loves PJ right now, so I know all about the Funny Bunnies and PJs extensive list of brothers and sisters.

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  12. Thanks for looking in on my blog. I'm just returning the visit. Such wise words. We all have things we should be more grateful for, maybe a list is a good idea.

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  13. I feel the same way about my kids--show gratefulness, and I'm more likely to indulge them!

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  14. I have been blogging about one word messages. Gratitude is a word that lends itself to that way of thinking. Nothing else is needed.

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  15. Gratitude really is a powerful thing. Thanks for the reminder.

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  16. I am so grateful everyday for little things, but somedays it's harder to see....this might be a very interesting challenge.

    Jules
    A Dose of Jules

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  17. Was expecting a linky or a sign up or something. Oprah had someone on her show a few years back that suggested people write a what I'm grateful for journal to prove to themselves their lives were better then they thought.

    Bridge and Beyond

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Hit me with your cheese!