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Expand Your Gratitude: Take the Gratitude Inventory!

Happy Thanksgiving!

In honor of the gratitude that surrounds us today, I want to share with you one of my favorite gratitude quotes of all time, from the movie American Beauty.

As Kevin Spacey’s spirit drifts away from his body, he ends the movie with:

“I guess I could be pretty pissed off about what happened to me, but it’s hard to stay mad when there’s so much beauty in the world. Sometimes I feel like I’m seeing it all at once, and it’s too much; my heart fills up like a balloon that’s about to burst. And then I remember to relax, and stop trying to hold onto it. And then it flows through me like rain, and I can’t feel anything but gratitude—for every single moment of my little life."

I have never found language that so closely describes what sheer and utter gratitude feels like to me.

So today, I challenge you to take a moment to do a gratitude inventory of your life. Go through this list below. Can you whole-heartedly agree with each one?

I am grateful for exactly where I am today.

I am grateful for my past, because it is gotten me where I am today.

I am grateful for my future, because I know it will be fantastic.

I am grateful for my family, because they have shared this ride of life with me.

I am grateful for my friends, because we have chosen each other.

I am grateful for my body, because it makes this whole adventure possible.

I am grateful for the 3.4 billion heartbeats I was given at birth, to design a life with.

Which ones of this list are obvious to you? Celebrate them!

Which ones do you struggle with? Spend some time there. Why do you struggle with them? Who do you need to forgive? Where do you need to relinquish control? What do you need to accept? Where can you embrace the positive instead of dwelling on the negative?

That is my challenge to you: to do the real work on this gratitude list so that the gratitude can run through you like rain. For every moment of your not-so-little life.

Thank you for being a part of my community and life,

Gratitude to Nic McPhee for the use of his image

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