Gratitude gurus Tony Robbins, Deepak Chopra, and the woman of empowerment herself, Oprah Winfrey, plus a multitude of others have all touted the benefits that can befall you if you learn to be grateful. (Ok, they don’t say that you will become a multi-millionaire, but they are, so that leads me to think it can happen…)
They emphasize practice of gratitude for where you’ve come from and where you are now.
Gratitude for the lessons learned along the way.
Gratitude for the cup of tea you are sipping.
Gratitude for the ant that crawls on the ground.
Gratitude for all things big and small in your life and in the world.
Sounds simple enough, right?
Then how come I can’t make it work??
I have started gratitude journals.
I have thought grateful thoughts.
I have meditated thankful chants.
I have squished my eyes tight and wished hard and still, no lottery wins, no dream job with a six figure income, no villa in Tuscany.
Yet I have still have faith in the lessons of these visionaries.
I have recently discovered something called a Buddha Board. It is a small grey pad-like surface that comes with a paint brush. The idea is to paint, in words or pictures, your thought, your wish, your grateful item. Appreciate it as you paint it, live in the moment with it, sit in gratitude because in a few minutes your inscription will evaporate “leaving you with a clean slate and a clear mind”.
Taking advice from Oprah, I have begun my days in gratitude. Before even rising from my bed, I pause and in my refreshed state, reflect on my life and all that I am thankful for. Then I pick up my brush, dip it in the small cup of water which is at the ready and scribe five things for which I am grateful (‘sleep’ is often one of them).
I sit in gratitude as I read my entries watching them fade as I do. I imagine them rising off the board, taking to the air sending my goodwill and appreciation into the universe, ever patient for the universe to reciprocate and show me my direction.
I may not ever have the lottery win.
I may not ever have the villa.
But what I do have is the belief that the universe has plans for me and gratitude is a path leading me in the right direction.
I am ever watchful for the smallest signs – stop, go, detour.
And where-ever I end up in my many meanderings, I will have earned all the tickets required for each stop on the route.