When I first moved to New York City over 14 years ago, it didn’t matter where I went (restaurants, bars, grocery stores, newsstands or my beloved Starbucks) people would ask, “You’re not from around here, are you?” It wasn’t because of my southern twang that does show up from time to time unexpectedly. When you live in a major city you expect the cultural diversity and melting pot of regions and countries. What seemed to shock the majority was hearing my words of thanks, gratitude or appreciation. “You realize all I did just now was fill up your water glass.” Many of my friends and family were concerned that my moving to NYC would turn me into a cynic or a fast paced charge down the street without looking up woman who would grunt or roll her eyes if anyone bumped into me or asked for directions. Of course, New York City isn’t the only place on planet Earth where people are surprised by gratitude or praise and it is a shame. Talk about the need to shift consciousness! What keeps so many of us from saying Thank You, Have a nice day, or Your work inspired me?
To make this topic more interesting, think about how well you receive gratitude, appreciation and praise. I’m going to go out on a limb and guess there are a lot of people out there like me who get embarrassed or will come up with reasons why what they did or are doing is really no big deal. Sometimes the very things others are appreciative of we take for granted because they come naturally to us. And why make a big deal out of something that is as effortless as breathing? Yet we will support and celebrate for others. Part of creating and being in the flow of prosperity and abundance is being open and receptive to BOTH giving and receiving. The door must open both ways in order for the good to have an unblocked path.
Today I came across the following quote from William Arthur Ward, “Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.” This one quote inspired the totality of Michele’s Daily Dash for July 8, 2010. The question of the day: What’s the good stuff in your life and how are you expressing gratitude? The daily challenge: write (25) 2” x 2” notes that read “Thank You”, “You are Loved” or “You are appreciated” and leave them anonymously for others throughout the day. As a global community we can come together and shift the mindset toward the effortless expression that people are gifts to us, as much as we are to them. It’s time to share a smile with a stranger for no other reason than you want them to feel as good as you do. It’s also time to feel gratitude toward ourselves for it all radiates outward from our hearts.
If you’re feeling blocked creatively, stuck in what feels like an endless job search or transition, or feel anchored in limiting thoughts like you’ll never find the right and perfect partner or home, it’s time to stop and look at gratitude. Affirm and know that you are grateful for all that you have, all that you are and all of the dynamic and delicious things yet to come. Continue to work on those gratitude journals at the end of every day acknowledging the people and experiences that made a difference in your life. Make sure you express words of appreciation for what you contributed to the betterment of your world and those in it. Read it at the beginning of every morning and set your daily intention for gratitude and grace. Check in with me in a few months and let me know about all of the good knocking down your door. I know that I know that I know it will happen for you.