Your Gratitude To-do List
December 28, 2010 Leave a comment
“The single greatest thing you can do to change your life today would be to start being grateful for what you have right now. And the more grateful you are, the more you get.” So says Oprah. Now whether you are an Oprah fan or not, one thing you have to give her is – she knows how to succeed. So maybe there is something to this gratitude business. At the very least, it’s worth a try. We’re taught to strive, struggle, plan, work, toil… you know, all that fun stuff, Then we focus on making as much as we can, The one with the most toys wins, or so the saying goes.
It’s easy to get lost in the struggle and spend the rest of our time resentful that we’re not accumulating as much as we want, or as much as we feel we deserve. But in between the struggle and the accumulating we often forget the best part. We forget to enjoy, to relax, to appreciate, to be grateful.
Generally I write about how to pitch your product or service, how to actively grow your business, and how to use social media and public relations to establish your brand. Important stuff; useful stuff. But that’s just a part of the equation. A gratitude how-to list is the business focus for today. To grow your business you have to not only actively work towards your goals, you also need to learn how to let go, relax and be grateful for what you already have. It sounds counterintuitive, but think about it. When driving a car do you simply push harder and harder on the accelerator in order to reach you destination? There is a certain recipe for failure, to put it mildly. If you’re smart you speed up, slow down, stop, look around and enjoy the scenery as you travel towards your destination. If you’re really smart, you’re grateful that you even have a car and if you don’t have a car, you’re grateful for what you do have.
We’re generally going through the motions in our day. Our actions become route robotic, or anxious and frenzied. We are so firmly focused on where we’re going we forget to pay any attention to where we are. We are so focused on what we perceive as the final goal or the brass ring, or whatever we choose to call it, that we forget that the journey truly is the destination. We never arrive at that magical “there”, because that place doesn’t exist. We move through a series of destinations; but the sad part is we generally ignore or minimize them because they are not “the” destination.
Just as launching a marketing or PR campaign takes some work, research and brainstorming, so does learning how to practice gratitude; so, for now forget about your business plan or your marketing plan or your to-do list. Make a different list this time. Make a list for everything you have to be grateful for. And don’t be stingy here; be lavish, extravagant. If you end up with a small list, go back and add some more points.
Your next assignment is to find signposts that remind you to practice this. There is a tree that stands on top of one of the hills in Griffith Park, not far from my office. It stands by itself. To me, there is something magical about it. I see it about once or twice a day as I’m driving. It’s my gratitude reminder. Not only am I grateful that that tree exists, it reminds me to be grateful for everything else I have. So that’s the last item on your gratitude to-do list. Find your tree
Copyright © Anthony Mora 2010