The Power of Gratitude
I wasn’t going to talk with you about gratitude because everyone is going to be talking about it with Thanksgiving and it seems to be a little played out but that thought goes against what makes gratitude so powerful in the first place.
I truly have so much to be grateful for and, regardless of your station in life right now, so do you. When, we overlook (like I was about to this year) all that we have to be thankful for, we forget that we already have so much in our lives and life is good.
It’s easy for high-achieving men like you and me to forget to hit the pause button from time to time and reflect upon all that we have. Frankly, we’ve already got our eyes fixed on the next prize to think too much about what has already come and gone. But that doesn’t really serve us and it does nothing for those who have stepped up to help us along the way.
As fixated as I can be on what’s next, I do believe it’s good to pull back the reigns and slow down occasionally. I think a lot of what we see in society today is this constant need for the next gadget and gizmo. That’s been perpetuated by the media and big business because they’re constantly striving to get your attention and your money but have you ever considered that what you currently have is already enough?
I look around in my house and, to be completely honest with you, at times, I’m disgusted at my level of consumerism. I’ve bought things I’ve only used once or never. I don’t treat a lot of what I have with the respect it deserves, and I watch my kids fight and bicker over the toys they have when they have closets full of other toys they haven’t touched for years.
The times that we, as a family, have the most peace in our homes is when we are with each other and that’s it – going on walks, hiking, camping, playing basketball, and just doing things together.
It’s unfortunate we’ve been conditioned to always want more, and bigger, and shinier, and more expensive.
So, with that said, I’ve really made a conscious effort to show appreciation for everything I have in my life currently and I’m learning to be satisfied, content, and happy with it. This isn’t easy because we’re constantly on the mission of keeping up with the Jones’ and falling into the comparison trap with those we see in our neighborhood or on TV, or social media.
But, if you look around and what you currently have and the standard of living you enjoy, it truly is amazing. I’m sitting here using technology to reach millions of people around the planet with a push of a button. If I’m a little cold, I turn on the heater. If I’m a little warm, I turn on the air conditioner. I have this incredible machine of machines that gets me from point A to point B at 80 MPH.
Most of you have families that love you and support you as mine does for me. If I’m having a bad day, my kids try to cheer me up. My wife has the opportunity and great blessing to stay home with our children and make this house we live in a home.
I have a job that is engaging and uplifting to me. And, I get to help you and millions of other men step more fully into their role as husbands, fathers, business owners, and community leaders. I get to work from home. I get to travel. I get to do the things I enjoy. I get to worship the way I see fit. I get to pursue my interests simply because they interest me. It truly is incredible how blessed we all are and yet we consume ourselves with negativity, and drama, and bickering, and finding the most trivial of things to be worried about or upset about.
To me, the most powerful part of expressing gratitude comes in the form of perspective. It shows you that what you’ve been consumed with really isn’t that big a deal in the grand scheme of things. I’m not discounting your problems and challenges but I wonder how many of these trails we face would melt away we stopped focusing on them and decided, instead, to focus on the positives our lives have to offer. Would it make us more positive? Would it make us more productive? Would it make us more profitable?
I know that’s certainly been true for me. In my experience, we attract what we focus on. If we focus on want, and negativity, and scarcity, I believe we’ll experience more of that in our lives.
If, however, we focus on what we have, and positivity, and abundance, I believe we have the power to attract more of that in our lives.
This is not wishful thinking or a misguided belief that we can simply will things into existence. It’s just showing gratitude for all that we are blessed with and all that we will be blessed with in the future.
As you can, I’ve been thinking a bit about this topic this week. In fact, I’m talking with the guys in our exclusive brotherhood, The Iron Council, all about gratitude this week (If you’re interested in learning more about it, you can join us at www.orderofman.com/ironcouncil). Earlier this week, I issued a challenge to them that I would like to issue to you.
Reach out to on person who you are grateful for. Let them know specifically why you’re grateful for them and simply say, “thank you.” That’s it. No ulterior motive. Just a thank you. See how you feel when you do that. I guaranteed you’ll feel uplifted.
Gentlemen, as I close things out today, I do want to take a quick minute and thank you. I started this two and a half years ago and I never would have thought we’d be where we are today. That could not have happened without you tuning in and engaging the way that you do.
I want to thank you for allowing me to turn an idea into a movement. I honor you for how you show up and recognize the role you have to play in making me a better man. So, from the bottom of my heart, thank you.
Have a happy Thanksgiving!