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Gratitude Conquers Chaos

Updated: 5 days ago

As I prepared to leave my house and head to the local pool for a lap swim, I pulled back the curtains to reveal a winter wonderland blanketed in pristine white. ❄️ ❄️

A piece of me questioned whether I should venture out ahead of the snowplows, fearing the roads would be a slippery mess, but decided that since I was already awake, I would roll the dice. I threw on my coat and boots and ventured out into the dark, annoyed by the inconvenience.🤨

In the parking lot, I navigated into what I thought was a parking space and wondered whether I would return to a parking ticket. I grabbed my swim bag and made my way to the pool.

On a typical morning, several swimmers are vying for the lanes closest to the locker rooms where the water feels slightly warmer. On this morning, I was the only swimmer. I nodded to the lifeguard and pressed play on my waterproof headset to discover dead batteries. 👎

I sighed, removed my headset, and jumped into the pool. As I warmed up, I realized the only movement in the water was coming from me. There were no choppy waves from other swimmers.

With each silent lap, my mind became more still. I felt myself floating as if gravity didn’t exist. I began to focus on every breath and noticed a rhythm between kick and stroke as my body glided through the water.

When I finished, I gently stretched before heading to the locker room where I had the entire space to myself. I took a long, hot shower and took my time getting dressed and packing up.

When I stepped out into the parking lot, a rush of clean, crisp air filled my lungs. The gentle snowflakes landed on my eyelashes and tickled my eyes and cheeks. Each step left behind a soft crunch in the freshly fallen snow, creating a trail that beckoned me deeper into the magical moment.

I watched in my car as the first light of dawn engulfed the darkness and painted the sky in shades of pink and gold. I felt a sense of awe wash over me.

As I made my way home through the winter wonderland, I was struck by the power of presence. The mediocre attitude that began my morning was replaced with an overwhelming sense of gratitude for the simple joys of life – a quiet mind, the beauty of nature, the serenity of a quiet morning swim, the warmth of a hot shower.

Gratitude is a powerful perspective that leads us to THRIVE.

Here's how.

According to psychologist Robert Emmons, gratitude blocks toxic emotions such as envy, resentment, regret, and depression and can transform lives because it helps people focus on the present and plays a role in magnifying positive emotions. A few tips:

☑️ Observe the Moment - Take a second to focus on your experience and how you are feeling. Take stock of your senses and think about what is helping you cope.

[You may also find the practice of mindfulness helpful because it focuses on becoming more aware of the present moment.]

☑️ Write it Down - Start a gratitude journal where you jot down a few things you are thankful for each day. Being able to look back on these observations can help when you are struggling to feel grateful.

☑️ Savor the Moment - Give yourself time to enjoy the moment. Focus on the experience and allow yourself to absorb those good feelings. Concentrate on the sensations and emotions you are experiencing in each moment and think about the things you appreciate.

☑️ Create Gratitude Rituals - Meditation, prayer, gratitude journal or mantra are examples of rituals that can inspire a greater sense of gratitude.

☑️ Give Thanks - Recognize and appreciate people, things, moments, skills, or gifts that bring you joy, peace, or comfort.

☑️ Get into your Body -- When you focus on your breath and body, it brings you back to the present moment. Try to feel the bottom of your feet, or rub your ears. It's difficult to do either in a distracted state.

Gratitude can transform any situation. It alters your vibration, moving you from negative energy to positive. It’s the quickest, easiest most powerful way to effect change in your life — this I know for sure. ~Oprah Winfrey

[Oprah Winfrey's short video on the Power of Gratitude can be found here 👉 YouTube ▶️ ]


The THRIVE model


Developing a sense of gratitude isn't complex or challenging. It doesn't require any special tools or training. And the more you practice it, the better you will become.

Focus on what you're grateful for and watch your world transform.

I’ve curated the best from my coaching practice, thought leadership and unique development programs to create something that takes the guesswork out of how to manage the chaos creators and the emotional chaos they incite - with kindness, confidence, and compassion.


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