In Harmony

faith

Love can’t be seen, only felt.
Trust can’t be proven, only shown.
Hope can’t be located, only permitted.
Happiness can’t be found, only consented to.
Joy can’t be owned, only allowed.
Contentment can’t be captured, only grown.
Gladness,
gratitude,
cheerfulness,
bliss,
enjoyment,
harmony,
delight
and even ecstasy
come only to a person
open enough
to receive the gifts.

Like raindrops, these things arrive only when I stand ready, exposed and open.

Happiness is when what you think,
what you say,
and what you do are in harmony.
Mahatma Gandhi

Finally Found It

Words-to-live-by1I am responsible for the growth
and maintenance of mindfulness in my own life.
Each day is an opportunity for me to
discover deeper truths about myself.
Every moment is an invitation for me
to grant others the space they need to be themselves.
Within me exists a world of awe and splendor,
and every morning is a reminder of
my innate obligation to participate in my own majesty.
This life is my inheritance as a human being
and I will claim it by living as fully as I possibly can
through mindful and compassionate participation.
May any reward I receive be recycled
through my service to others.
unknown

A simple statement; a prayer sent into the universe at the start of the day. I am grateful to be alive and humbly thankful to be the happiest I have ever been.

Every journey has its own traveler. Every dream has its own dreamer. We are all belonged to a specific journey and dream. Some people are currently looking for it, some people are just figuring it out, some people are still lost, and to some they have finally found it. Happy Positivity

More Important than Facts

attitude

Fifteen years ago if someone had earnestly tried to explain the impact a person’s attitude has, I would have listened patiently while thinking the premise was mostly new age swill. I would have been wrong but staunchly convinced I wasn’t.

Albert Einstein was accurate when he said, “Weakness of attitude becomes weakness of character”.

So was Khalil Gigran when he more poetically wrote, “Your living is determined not so much by what life brings to you as by the attitude you bring to life; not so much by what happens to you as by the way your mind looks at what happens”.

When I thought my life sucked the most and had the guts to take a close look why, I found the culprit most often staring back at me from a mirror. About a decade ago I decided to stop having bad days and over time was able to do just that. As you chuckle to yourself about how crazy that sounds, let me say I have very difficult and challenging days. But they are never bad.

As long as I breathe I will relish the gift of life. What an amazing difference an attitude shift made for me. Now I embrace the knowing that grief, heartache and pain are as surely parts of a good life as joy, happiness and contentment.

Attitude, to me, is more important than facts.
It is more important than the past, the education, the money, than circumstances,
than failure, than successes, than what other people think or say or do.
It is more important than appearance, giftedness or skill.
It will make or break a company… a church… a home.
The remarkable thing is we have a choice everyday regarding the attitude
we will embrace for that day. We cannot change our past…
We cannot change the fact that people will act in a certain way.
We cannot change the inevitable.
The only thing we can do is play on the one string we have,
and that is our attitude.
I am convinced that life is 10% what happens to me
and 90% of how I react to it.
And so it is with you…
we are in charge of our attitudes.
Charles R. Swindoll

All in all today is a typical day. I am neither boiling over with joy nor wandering around in the shadow of grief. But it’s a damn fine day. As much as anything because I chose to label it as a good day. My attitude is my choice and I choose to be grateful for every second of today.

Attitude is a little thing
that makes a big difference.
Winston Churchill

Thoughts “A through F” and Their Antidotes

elite-daily-hiking-view

A – I wish I had not lived so much of my life for what I thought others wanted me to be. I chose mostly wrong and ended up pleasing no one.

B – I regret hurting so many people and know my dysfunctions at the time were no excuse. I’m truly sorry. I was lost within myself.

C – I wish I had not blamed my parents for so long. Even the bad job of parenting they did was the best they knew how.

D – I regret I broke the heart of the woman who within her grief found a way to forgive me and then taught me what love really is. I will never forget the kindness you showed me.

E – I wish I had been a better parent. I was a good one, but would be a great one now.

F – I regret living so much of my life hurrying always towards something uncertain in the future. I missed a lot.

1. Let go of the past. Learn your lessons. . . never forget them, but move on. Learn to forgive others and, (this is a biggie!), learn to forgive yourself. It’s difficult to move forward and take advantage of second chances if you are stuck in the past. Let it go.

Finish each day and be done with it. You have done what you could. Some blunders and absurdities no doubt creep in; forget them as soon as you can. Tomorrow is a new day; begin it well and serenely and with too high a spirit to be cumbered with your old nonsense. This day is all that is good and fair. It is too dear, with its hopes and invitations, to waste a moment on the yesterdays. Ralph Waldo Emerson

2. Develop a positive attitude and awareness. Expect the best and look for the good. Become conscious of opportunities and very often you will find them right under your
nose. Second chances can be quiet and disguised — one has to be on the lookout for them. Develop the right attitude for you and see what happens.

Thomas Jefferson said, “Nothing can stop the man with the right mental attitude from achieving his goal. Nothing on earth can help the man with the wrong attitude.”

3. Persevere. Keep on. Figure it out. Press on. If one approach doesn’t work the way you would like it to, then try another. Do what you gotta do.

One of my very favorite quotes is from Ann Landers, who says, “If I were asked to give what I consider the single most important piece of advice for all humanity, it would be this: Expect trouble as an inevitable part of life and when it comes, hold your head high, look it squarely in the eye and say, ‘I will be bigger than you. You cannot defeat me.'”

Let Go + Positive Attitude + Perseverance = Second Chances
by Beth Burns http://www.livinglifefully.com/flo/flosecondchances.htm

I’ve had a great life and so much of it is left to live! I am excited about the future and am truly happy in the present. I am deeply grateful, never more so than at the moment I sit writing this.

Sometimes life gives you a second chance, or even two!
Not always, but sometimes.
It’s what you do with those second chances that counts.
Dave Wilson

Ballet In Blue Jeans

52f73707b693b_image

From childhood through the majority of adulthood, I felt “less than” often and in many ways. Growing up poor in a dysfunctional family contributed the majority of the cause, yet holding on so tightly to the intense self-consciousness past my 20’s was all my fault completely. I was simply too old to be blaming anyone but myself!

Playing the blame game is one of the easiest reasons to hold a person back from improving his/her life. Honestly I can see now my twisted way of thinking was never a reason really. It was an excuse. As long as I could hang responsibility for my behavior on others I was able to explain away my bad manners, ill placed conduct and off-key ways of thinking. Thankfully most of that is gone now.

Friday evening for Valentine’s day my special someone and I went to see our wonderful ballet company perform “Cinderella” while backed by our superb symphony. The performance was truly outstanding. What I found most entertaining however were the over-dressed folks in their weekend regalia who were all fancied up to impress others. A few probably did so because they enjoyed being finely dressed. But for the majority the peacock pageantry was aimed at being noticed and seen. The strutting and posing amused me through two intermissions.

My girlfriend said at one point that she thought we were the only ones at the ballet dressed in blue jeans, but neither of us saw it as any point to be concerned about. Once upon a time I would have been nearly devastated to have shown up dressed differently from the crowd. Friday night I was actually proud of us for going to the ballet in pressed and presentable jeans. After the performance we did count another half-dozen souls who found  jeans to also be appropriate dress for the ballet.

Today I am grateful to usually practice well the statement, “What you think of me is none of my business”.  And I am so much happier having come to believe the ABSOLUTE TRUTH of those words!

No one can make you feel inferior
without your consent.
Eleanor Roosevelt

A State of Gratitude

soybean-clusterThrough sickness, good health, international travel, a grueling career and many days of ordinary life, for well over two years I consistently put something fresh here daily. Some of the deepest and most emotional happenings of my life have been openly shared since my first entry into this blog on April 25, 2011. It was a “Higher Power” thing from the beginning, as I simply woke up one morning and knew I was supposed to “blog” about gratitude and build a closer relationship with being thankful.

Focusing on what one is grateful for, especially for the difficult teachings that observed hardship and emotional suffering can bring, has been eye-opening. Thankfulness caused me to see more to be thankful for. Demons have been turned into allies. Dark corners have become illuminated. Animosities have been dissipated. Old wounds have found healing. Blessings and grace have become more profound. Each seed of gratefulness took root, grew and bore fruit. GoodMorningGratitude.com has been life changing beyond what can be easily explained.

In recent months I have too often lacked the inspiration for keeping up the typical daily entries but not because I was ungrateful. Quite the contrary. There just seemed to frequently not be something new to say. Often I just “posted something”. After near a thousand entries, so much of what I initially needed to express had been said and I found myself repeating thoughts too frequently. A good bit of the time I have been guilty of just ‘filling the space’.

I say all that to say, GoodMorningGratitude.com is evolving and I am making a fresh commitment to this blog. However producing a page and a half consistently every day is not where I am in my growth and development. My hope is make long-form entries when I am inspired to make them. On other days it’s my intention to simply share a gratitude-provoking quote, thought or poem posted with an interesting photograph/image. If I miss a few days, so be it, but I will be more consistent than in recent weeks. (Thank you to everyone who asked if I was “okay’!)

For those who supported this blog from near the beginning I am humbly grateful. To the thousands who discovered GoodMorningGratitude.com and turned others on to it, the words “thank you’ seem hardly enough.

I am grateful for the clarity of thought this morning that brought these words from my mind, mind and soul onto this page. To a greater degree than ever before there is thankfulness within for all the ways goodmorninggratitude.com has positively effected in my life and yet will.

The more you are in a state of gratitude,
the more you will attract things
to be grateful for.
Unknown

It Hurts Because It Is Real

Playing in the rain

For every bit of hurt that shaped me, for every bit of friction that smoothed me, for every disappointment that taught me and for every illusion made clear… I am grateful. The most difficult have been the severest, but most revered teachers.

The good times and the bad times both will pass.
It will pass. It will get easier. But the fact that it will get easier
does not mean that it doesn’t hurt now. And when people try to minimize
your pain they are doing you a disservice. And when you try to minimize
your own pain you’re doing yourself a disservice. Don’t do that.
The truth is that it hurts because it’s real. It hurts because it mattered.
And that’s an important thing to acknowledge to yourself.
But that doesn’t mean that it won’t end, that it won’t get better.
Because it will.
John Green