New year resolutions usually compel us to think about what we can do better than what we have done. Most people I know don’t create a new year resolution with glee and excitement. Usually, it’s accompanied by a rolling of the eyes that says, “I know, I know, I really should…”
Wow, what a way to start a new year.
I’d like to suggest that you create a new year state of mind. You needn’t acquire anything new. You needn’t change who you are. You needn’t wish for something you’re not.
The state of mind is gratitude. Gratitude for what’s already in your life. Gratitude for the little things you never notice but make your day complete and meaningful. The fullness of your stomach. The legs that allow you to walk. The faucet that produces drinkable water every time. Ah, you say, why bother with these little things? Because there are people without these elemental aspects of life and would celebrate with such gratitude if it became so in their life. For it is in these small, little things that we can find the miracles in our lives. In gratitude for these things, we can diminish fear in our lives, and the longing for things that can never make us truly happy. Research has shown that acquisition of things, even possessing coveted titles, status and pay do not bear long lasting happiness.
It’s a practice for me to start my days with thoughts of gratitude. I call it a practice because everyday, I have the tendency to wake up thinking about what I haven’t done or don’t have; and, so I must practice sitting in silence to admire the sunrise, to appreciate my sleeping children, to marvel at my healthy body that allows me to live my life. Once I’ve practiced thinking gratitude, I notice a discernible shift in my state of being. And that state of being affects my state of doing, because, I know that whatever I do, or don’t do, there’s enough in my life to offer me solace and peace.
Gratitude is a state of mind. It’s always there for us. I invite you to look around with new eyes. It’s truly amazing what you can see.
Happy new year.