Originally Posted November 5, 2014
Of course, I don’t really mean this! I truly believe that gratitude has the power to change your life. And, you can never over-do gratitude. All the cool kids are doing it…gratitude journals, gratitude lists, posting their gratitude’s on Facebook. But this Thanksgiving month, I want to try something just a little different.
When we begin to discuss what we’re grateful for this time of year, we often look outside of ourselves. For instance, I am grateful for (in no particular order) my incredible family and friends and my dog, Ellie. I am grateful for being allowed to do work that I thoroughly enjoy down to my core. I am grateful for the opportunities that have presented themselves in my life. I’m grateful for being a part of the Chicago Jazz Philharmonic family. I am grateful to be a trainer for iPEC (Institute for Professional Excellence in Coaching). I am grateful that I have a warm place to sleep, clothes on my back and money in the bank. I am grateful for my amazing clients, students and mentors. I could go on and on. You get the idea.
But let’s take this gratitude thing in a different direction. As with our lives, we often look outside of ourselves for happiness, IE: a relationship, more money, bigger house, better job, nicer boss, thinner body, etc. For this month, what would it look like if we started making a gratitude list of what we’re grateful for within our own selves. Yes, you read it right…within our own selves!! For some reason this list becomes much harder to create.
It’s interesting when I work with my clients and even for myself, it is so easy for us to rattle off what we’re not good at, what we personally lack. And yet, it’s so challenging for us to come up with a list of our own strengths and what we are grateful for that we have internally. (Yikes, does she want me to say nice things about myself? That’s very uncomfortable. Won’t I sound like an egomaniac?)
I promise, you won’t sound like you’re bragging. Just try it. It IS going to be uncomfortable because this is a muscle we just don’t flex very often. Add to the list everyday for the rest of the month and see how it feels, not only while you’re making the list, but when you look at the entire list on November 30th. Take it one step further and share the list with someone! There is plenty of ‘good’ stuff in all of us, but we seem to forget. So, since there’s no time like the present…I’ll start.
I am grateful for:
- my ability to connect with people
- my ability to see opportunities even in the most challenging circumstances
- my humor
- my kind and compassionate heart
- my parallel parking skills
- my ability to sing
- my health and physical power to take my dog for a walk whenever I want (see how that’s flipped from, I’m so out of shape!)
- the ability to think quickly on my feet
- my ability to create fun
- my smile
- my ability to create a safe space for people to confide in me
So, does that sound like bragging? It IS uncomfortable to be this vulnerable and share what I believe to be true about myself.
Now it’s YOUR turn. What are YOU grateful for within yourself?
Enjoy this exercise, enjoy learning to appreciate your strengths and gifts, and enjoy the season of Thanksgiving.
Here’s to your grateful bliss!
Lesley Picchietti, CPC, ACC, ELI-MP
© Inspire Bliss Coaching and Consulting 2014
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