Creating Gratitude

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One of the most powerful ways you can use your gratitude journal is to shift your perception. Let’s try it now.

Write down a situation that is occurring in your life right now that is making you unhappy. Write down as many details about the situation, and be as negative as possible. Get it all out on the page.

Now write down all the emotions that this situation creates in you that you view as negative. Write as many negative emotions here as you can. Don’t hold anything back. You can add drawings and collage to really capture the feeling.

You’re probably feeling pretty yucky right now, so let’s get ready to shift.

Look at your list of feelings and circle the one that feels the most negative to you. For example, let’s say you circled the word “fear.” You are now going to write a gratitude statement about that emotion.  For example, “I am grateful for feeling fear because it is teaching me what I need to feel safe in this situation.”

Spend a few minutes mulling that over in your mind. What is fear teaching you? How can you be safe in this situation? When you’re ready, start writing down your thoughts on what you need to feel safe.

You should already be feeling a shift in how you feel about the situation, but let’s take this one step further. Based on your journaling, what actions do you need to take? Pick one that you feel you can do easily and act on it. Keep going along the path of creating safety for yourself. And while you are doing so, remember to be grateful for your fear.

You can do this with any emotion you are feeling in a difficult situation. Stress teaches us how to relax, worry teaches us how to prepare, and anger teaches us how to protect our boundaries. Keep working through all the feelings and soon you’ll notice that instead of being unhappy about the situation, you’re grateful for it.

Thanks to BK on Flickr for the beautiful graphic.

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How do you define success?

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We live in a culture where we define success as winning.

What does winning mean with schools making sure that everyone who participates gets a winner’s ribbon? Does anyone really win if everyone wins?

What does winning mean to the Olympian who turns in her best time, beats the previous world and Olympic records, but places third?

How do we define winning for ourselves so that success is possible in every life situation?

The critical element that no one talks about is the locus of control.

Locus of control refers to your belief that you can control what is happening to you. An internal locus of control means that you believe you have control over your life. An external locus of control means that you believe that you are at the whim of the fates and other people control you.

Modern society teaches us to have an external locus of control. Consider how we use language: “You made me mad!” “It’s your fault!” “You made me love you, I didn’t want to do it, I didn’t want to do it!”

An external locus of control means that our success is completely dependent on what other people think. Their opinions control our lives, which leads to an emotional roller coaster ride.

I suggest that you consciously make the decision to choose an internal locus of control in life experiences that involve competition or being judged. Make your own determination as to what constitutes success in these situations. Set your own goal, and if you meet it, you are successful, regardless of what anyone else thinks. This will build your self-confidence and create the foundation for future successes.

Photo by kris krüg on Flickr.

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The World is on my Side

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I wandered everywhere,
through cities and countries wide,
And everywhere I went,
the world was on my side.
Roman Payne

One of the natural laws of success is that you are surrounded by support. People want you to be successful, and they want to be part of your success. Ask for the assistance that you need, and allow people to become part of your success team.

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Write it on your heart that every day is the best day in the year. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

Take a break from life today to journal about what it feels like on New Year day – specifically that feeling of having a fresh start. How does the world around you look when you believe that an entirely new life is waiting for you? How can you capture that feeling and experience it every day of year?

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Merry Christmas

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Blog-ChristmasSomehow, not only for Christmas but all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others Is the joy that comes back to you.
And the more you spend in blessing
The poor and lonely and sad,
The more of your heart’s possessing
Returns to you glad.
-John Greenleaf Whittier

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Treasure This Moment

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Forever – is composed of Nows –
‘Tis not a different time –
Except for Infiniteness –
And Latitude of Home –


From this – experienced Here –
Remove the Dates – to These –
Let Months dissolve in further Months –
And Years – exhale in Years –


Without Debate – or Pause –
Or Celebrated Days –
No different Our Years would be
From Anno Dominies by Emily Dickinson
Credit: Digital collage by Liz Shaw with elements from Artspiration Studio (Tangie Baxter and Rebecca McMeen)
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Every Day Brings a Choice

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Joan Borysenko

Every day we have a choice to practice stress or to practice peace. –Joan Borysenko

Every day. A choice. It doesn’t feel like it some days, does it? It feels like stress comes thundering down like an avalanche and buries you in its icy grip. No one chooses the avalanche. It just comes.

Even so, every day. A choice. Feelings are meaningless. They are tricks your mind plays on you. Feelings turn you into a victim puppet. They jerk you around and make you dance to their tune. Feelings want to distract you. We hold our feelings close for comfort as we dance the feverish choreography that they create for us.

Still. Every day. A choice. A choice to ignore what you feel. A choice to create your own reality instead. A choice to live in peace regardless of circumstances. A choice to be happy on your own terms.

What are you choosing today – stress or peace?

Credit: Digital collage by Liz Shaw with elements from Artspiration Studio (Tangie Baxter and Rebecca McMeen)
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