"We can only be said to be alive in those moments when our hearts are conscious of our treasures."
“If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, "thank you," that would suffice.”
If it's true that we have to hear something stated seven times before we actually hear it, perhaps that explains the wide assortment of sources reminding us, as a culture, of the obvious fact that gratefulness is important.
Take for example, the field of science. Last year, the University of California Berkeley announced a $3.1 million (yes, I said millions!) research study on gratitude, explaining that their Greater Good Science Center researchers would be able to study “the psychology, sociology, and neuroscience of well-being and how we foster a more thriving, resilient, and compassionate society.”
And a recent Psychology Today article that emphasized: “Gratitude is a sentiment we'd all do well to cultivate, according to positive psychologists, mental health clinicians and researchers who seek to help everyone create more joy in life. Feeling thankful and expressing that thanks makes you happier and heartier—not hokier.”
This is not rocket science. We hardly need a study to tell us that the practice of counting our blessings is good for us.
But perhaps we do need to hear it everywhere—stressed by doctors, psychologists, researchers, and neuroscientists, before we—before I—embrace the practice with my whole heart.
Being grateful requires me to pay attention, to be present to the moment. Or in my current favorite word, it compels me to notice!
So -- I am excited this week to join the #SmallSuccess Thursday project at CatholicMom.com. Here are my simple 3 Small Successes.
May noticing them help me grow in gratitude for the abundant blessings in my life!
- #1, for my husband’s daily handwritten, alliterated messages on the board on our fridge – which I confess, make me giggle. Today’s announcement: thunderous thoughtful thriving Thursday!
- #2, for the texts, photos and emails from my four young adult children—sometimes practical, often funny, and always loving. I am so grateful that they take the time to connect with me during their busy days!
- #3, the weather this afternoon in central Oklahoma: 60 degrees of sunshine. Enough said.
I will write soon -- tomorrow? -- about our wonderful experience at St. Mary of the Annunciation in Illinois this past weekend!