- On December 23, 2022
- 0 Comments
- gratitude, happy holidays, mindfulness, slowing down, time
by Adam Baier and Nancy Dilts
Adam’s internship wrapped up at the end of the Fall semester. I am so grateful for the assistance he provided me in setting up project and client management systems and writing for the blog. Here, we each give our perspectives on gratitude. Watch for one more post from Adam in the new year!
Gratitude from Adam
In today’s increasingly digitized world, it’s easy to take all we have for granted. We have so much available at our fingertips, we forget to take that step back and pay attention to what’s going on around us and practice gratitude.
The holidays are a time of reflection, not only about ourselves, but about the environment around us. It’s the simple things that I’m grateful for:
✨ I’m thankful for a place to call home, because I know of the growing homeless population in the small city of Eau Claire, where I live.
✨ My gratitude is especially for the love from others in my life, because there are those less fortunate than me as they have no choice but to spend the holidays alone.
✨ I’m grateful for food, because there are developing nations who don’t have the luxuries that I enjoy in the holidays.
Making time for gratitude
When I take a step back, I remember to take a few moments to speak aloud three things that I’m grateful for. I typically like to do this on my car ride to work, when I wake up in the morning, or before I go to sleep at night. This practice really helps me to recenter myself and brings a calmer state of mind.
Take time for yourself this holiday season, and remind yourself of all the joys you have in your life.
Adam’s right in that it’s easy to forget to practice gratitude. I have this little message to myself front and center on the magnetic board over my desk to remind me. “Gratitude and delight” – two things I practice to be mindful of in my work, life, and relationships.
2022 has been a year of big highs and big lows for my family – my daughter Grace graduated from high school and had a great first semester at college. (Two very big highs). NDWC is growing, and I’m helping even more people feel fantastic in their clothes – another high.
We also navigated Grace and my husband getting Covid in the summer (miraculously, I didn’t get it). It effectively ruined our family vacation, but we were still grateful that neither of them were dangerously sick or had long Covid.
I found myself missing Grace more than anticipated this Fall, and my father, who had been declining with Alzheimer’s for the past year, got Covid. His failing body wasn’t able to withstand it, and he died on October 22 – I’m so thankful his suffering wasn’t long. It has been a huge blow. I miss him and am still feeling untethered with both of my parents gone.
Gratitude brings joy
Even with the difficult things that have happened, I find that gratitude has a very powerful effect in my life. I have been actively practicing gratitude for several years now. Like Adam, when I wake up I list all the things I’m grateful for. I also practice the Loving Kindness Meditation, which I find can increase your capacity for gratitude.
When you focus intentionally on the positive things in your life, even the smallest ones, it can shift your mindset. When you find gratitude within the challenges, even if you have to stretch to find it, your mind opens itself to opportunity.
Not all of my days are rosy. Having these practices in place though helps me to find the light. Practicing gratitude helps me see the joy. It shows me the abundance I have in my life – once you start listing what you’re grateful for, it’s easier to see even more things.
My wish for you
✨ May this holiday season be peaceful and filled with gratitude.
✨ May you feel love for yourself.
✨ May your joy be abundant.