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Daily Leadership Thought #125 – Why You Should Be Grateful

We get to decide what we focus on in life. The glass can be “half empty” or “half full.” It all comes down to your perspective. Sadly, many of us end up obsessing over what we don’t have or how we are falling short rather than counting our multiple blessings. And, without question, there is always something to be grateful for. Even in the depths of great personal difficulty or professional challenge there is always something to hold on to if you are honest with yourself and appreciative of your circumstances.

We all have people who care about us. It is the rare person who goes through life and doesn’t pick up some positive relationships along the way. The number and intensity of these relationships may vary with time and by person but they exist nonetheless. Make sure you stay connected to others who make you feel good about yourself and hopeful about life. Reciprocate their efforts and don’t let distance or pettiness spoil the connection. When and if close relationships do end, accept this reality and seek out new connections. The world is literally full of good people. Friendship is a real gift in this world and should be sought, cultivated and cherished.

Despite the media bombardment to the contrary, we live in relative health, comfort and privilege in comparison to our ancestors. This doesn’t mean that life is without its challenges, but these obstacles most often pale in comparison to what previous generations had to deal with. We just have more time to ponder our own happiness. Just think about how easier it is to go to college, travel, live where we want, change jobs, entertain ourselves, access information, stay connected with other people, finance purchases, buy what you need and deal with complex health issues. I’m not anti-nostalgia, but like all things, it has its place and should be grounded in truth not fiction. Some aspects of life may have been simpler for our grandparents but it is highly doubtful it was easier or better as a whole.

I make it a point to try and count my blessing every day. It never ceases to maze me how long the list can be when I put only minimal effort into it. I can also come up with a laundry list of complaints, but what good ever comes from that? Self-pity is an unattractive and useless character trait. Believe it or not, the world does not conspire against you or anyone else. We all have much to be grateful for if only we open up our eyes, minds and hearts to our respective situations. Adversity may be inevitable in life, but so are love, happiness, friendship and good fortune.


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