The Cure for THOSE Moments

We all have THOSE moments.

And when you are training for the Boston Marathon like I am (please CLICK HERE to support my fundraising for Boston Children’s Hospital), THOSE moments happen constantly.

But all of us, throughout our days, face THOSE moments: the infinitesimal nanoseconds of adversity and apathy when we find ourselves choosing from one of the Big G’s.

1) Give in

2) Give up

3) Give effort

That’s alot of G’s to keep track of, but I’m adding one more even bigger G that makes the decision easier: Gratitude.

When I move into a Gratitude mindset, I immediately sense my shift from feelings of obligation (I should…) to joy (I get to…). I move from making excuses why I can’t (Meh, but….) to reasons why I can (Yes, because …). In gratitude, I see the decision and its corresponding call to action with a refreshing and appropriate perspective– not too myopic, not too vague.

Gratitude has been shown to make us happier, reduce depression, increase self-esteem, improve relationships of all kinds, breed optimism, reduce impatience, improve decision-making, make work more meaningful, reduce turnover of employees, improve sleep, reduce blood pressure, help recovery from illness and spur exercise,

Keep in mind, even for a runner, the “right” decision isn’t always to Give effort. Sometimes, it’s important to Give in to what you are feeling and pause. Sometimes, it’s critical for your well-being to Give up a certain goal, or a certain relationship, or a fixed mindset.

We don’t only get stronger by pushing harder. We also grow by knowing when to rest and recover. Gratitude helps. When we consciously appreciate what we have and understand how we’ve gotten here, feelings of clarity and resolve can guide us throughout it all.

Maybe Gratitude comes naturally to you. Maybe you wake up with a smile on your face and joy in your heart, grateful for another day to live a beautiful and loving life.

Me? Not very often. I usually wake up with quick metal recap of things that went wrong, things unresolved and eating at me, and things I have to do in order to feel better. More focused on what I don’t have than on what I do have. More focused on what to do than how to be.

Don’t wait until Thanksgiving to be thankful.

So I had to earn a Certificate in Positive Psychology from Wholebeing Institute at Kripalu to fully grasp the human potential of Gratitude, the Biggest G of all.

Let me be clear: Gratitude matters.

Let me be more clear: Gratitude is (almost) everything.

It’s incontrovertibly the most powerful remedy for human happiness. Time and time again, in countless experiments and social observations, the heartfelt expression of gratitude is shown to be the most immediate and lasting method of happily sustaining a meaningful, pleasurable, and thriving life.

And yes, like the Italian delicacy of wild foraged cardoon, it’s free when you know where to look for it. (Hint: find a mirror.)

For Gratitude isn’t something to do exactly. Gratitude is how to be.

This article from Psychology Today is the best piece I’ve ever seen to summarize key research studies and 28 Benefits of Gratitude. You can also download a free report on 3 Gratitude Practices from a link in the story.

In my next post, I’ll share how I move into gratitude during my long runs with my Gratitude is Every Stride Mantra.

Please CLICK HERE to check the progress of my fundraising or to contribute to my fundraising goal of $10,000 for Boston Children’s Hospital.

Only FIVE MORE MONDAYS before Marathon Monday! Every dollar matters for this great cause! Please help me meet my goal!

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