I am on a quest for complete joy and connection in my life, and I've had a brilliant idea! This is a brilliant idea for MY situation and MY needs, but I think it applies to everyone and I want to share it and invite everyone I know to join in!
I am calling it "The Great Gratitude Experience of 2011", and my goal this new year is to blow my gratitude into a great big epic ball of energy that will heal myself, my family and the whole world!!!
A little too ambitious? Perhaps, but I honestly feel that if we can put more focus on giving thanks to God and those around us for what we DO have, amazing transformations can take place in our lives and I am set on proving that to myself in this next year of my life!!
2010 has been a beautiful year for me! I think I can say I am a better version of myself now, having experienced this year! I have so much to be grateful for.....we all do, and it serves us a great deal, to look for those things and then actually give thanks for them!
"Do we want our homes to be happy? If we do, let them be the abiding place of prayer, thanksgiving and gratitude"
~President George Albert Smith 1944
And who wants a happy home? Hello.......all of us!
"Gratitude is a Spirit‑filled principle. It opens our minds to a universe permeated with the richness of a living God. Through it, we become spiritually aware of the wonder of the smallest things, which gladden our hearts with their messages of God's love. This grateful awareness heightens our sensitivity to divine direction. When we communicate gratitude, we can be filled with the Spirit and connected to those around us and the Lord. Gratitude inspires happiness and carries divine influence."
~Bonnie D. Parkin 2007
By being grateful, we become better people, and the beautiful thing is that it opens us up to receive those things we actually are lacking or desperately needing in our lives!
So here is my idea!
1- Buy yourself a journal, or notebook or stack of paper, and the first assignment is to simply write out exactly what you wish your life could look like. This is your big chance to vent about all of the things that are lacking in your life, but instead of writing about what you don't have just write up a description of the way you want your life to look! Include the type of person you wish to be as well.
2 - Find yourself a "Gratitude Buddy", someone who wants to participate in this with you.
3 - Everyday at some point write down at least 5 things you are grateful for that day.
4- When you say your prayers be sure to give thanks to Heavenly Father for the good things you have noticed during your day!
5 - Once a week email or text your list from the week (up to 20 things) to your Gratitude Buddy, and they should email their list to you. What this does is hopefully create an energy of optimism in your life. If you want to, you can email your list to a whole group of people!
6 - At the end of the year look at that first page you wrote, about all of the things you hope for, and see how much closer you are to having that life, and to being that person!!
My guess is that it will "surprise you what the Lord has done"! (Count Your Many Blessings)
We don't need to dwell so much on what is lacking in our lives, or how badly we feel things are going, or the ever popular....I'll be happy when....statements! It seems like we spend too much time discussing all of our problems and disappointments with those around us, which isn't always bad, it is good to have friends to lean on and support us through trials, but what if we shifted our focus off of our lack and placed in on our blessings? I guarantee our desire to complain will go down, and we will be blessed beyond what we think possible!!
"And he who receiveth all things with thankfulness shall be made glorious; and the things of this earth shall be added unto him, even an hundred fold, yea, more." ~Doctrine and Covenants 78:19
So are you with me?