As promised, this month is all about what I call The GREAT Life , which consists of these 5 pillars: GRATITUDE, RESPECT, ENTHUSIASM, positive ATTITUDE, and a TEAM-first mentality.
Living The GREAT Life is a choice and, like everything else, it takes practice. Malcolm Gladwell claimed that in order to become truly proficient (great) at a particular task, we have to spend a total of 10,000 hours practicing it. This has been referenced numerous times. It’s been debated as well. And while I’m not sure there’s a means by which to determine proficiency, I would suggest to you that 10,000 hours of practicing the GREAT life, will indeed significantly and permanently effect your mental state, and will open you up to a wealth of positive experiences in your life, because the perspective from which you will assess life have changed. 10,000 hours is just over 1 year. Give it a shot. What do you have to lose?!
The first pillar is GRATITUDE. On occasion, it’s the toughest to practice, but it’s the glue that holds all of the rest together. Two quotes always come to mind immediately when I initially think of gratitude.
“God gave you a gift of 86,400 seconds today. Have you used one to say ‘thank you?'” ~William A. Ward
“Decrease the amount of time between the time something happens and the time you say, ‘Thank You God.'”
Saying thank you (and being thankful) is only one way of expressing gratitude, but it may be the easiest one to practice on a consistent basis. Is it unreasonable to find one thing every waking hour to say thank you for? A thank you to someone for holding a door; a thank you to God for waking you up, or for the fact that you can afford to pay a bill; a thank you to somebody that cooked your food? or someone that showed you how to do something, inspired you, or helped you out in some way… It’s often difficult to be thankful for the things that we perceive as less positive in our lives, but I’d encourage you, when those situations arrive, to find something ELSE in your life that you truly can be grateful for as quickly as possible. Eventually you get into the habit of being grateful in moments of [di]stress, and I believe that those moments become considerably less difficult to manage.
Find reasons today, all day, to be grateful and to verbalize your gratitude.