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Posts Tagged ‘Thanksgiving’

I don’t know about you, but this time of year I take the word Thanksgiving literally. I am more grateful for all I have in the world. I silently send thanks to someone for who they are in my life. I am forever grateful for all my possessions, as simple as they may be. And I stop to acknowledge the truly amazing machine my body is and the fact that it keeps going with every breath.

 

In the presence of all this gratitude, I found myself thinking about my Dad and his “buddies” – all over 80 years old. Among them, they had 345 years of experience on this planet. With their fantastic perspective, I wondered what wisdom they had to share about life and gratitude.

 

So I set up a lunch with all of them to hear the wisdom of the ages.

 

I should have known better. 🙂

 

Not surprisingly, the conversation did not go as planned, but I was surprised . . . and touched . . . by what emerged.

 

The conversation turned into a LOVEfest! Each one of them acknowledged and appreciated the others for what they bring to the friendship and the group. More than anything else, they spoke about the strength and importance of the relationships and friendships in their life.

 

They appreciated their families, their kids, their wives, their grandchildren, and each other.

 

Interestingly, their jobs, success, businesses and accomplishments were all secondary to the relationships in their life.

 

While I wasn’t surprised by this wisdom, I let their words really sink into my soul after our conversation. All too often I find my life gets sidetracked or my peace is disturbed by my ego, which is more concerned about my superficial successes or accomplishments.

 

Their lifetime of wisdom strongly suggests otherwise.

 

That one jewel of wisdom – that our relationships, friendships and family are the most important thing in our lives – is worth repeating over and over and over again . . . and perhaps that is the true wisdom of the ages.

 

These are all great men with amazing life stories. But in the end, what matters most is WHO they love, not WHAT they have done.

 
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No matter your age, young or old, take a moment this month to hug all those people who mean something to you. It is clear to me that it is the most important and valuable thing you can do in all your life.

 

Rarely do the members of one family grow up under the same roof.

– Richard Bach, Illusions

 

I love the expansiveness of this quote. There is an abundance of love to be received, and given, in the world . . . if only we allow for it. It is always our own heart that gets in the way of either. And that is our challenge as humans.

 

There is another wonderful quote by Rumi that states, “Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it.”

 

May this year be the year you practice the wisdom of our elders and fully feel the love around you, and give it back to the world tenfold.

 

READ HOW THIS APPLIES TO YOUR BUSINESS here.

 
 
Below is a beautiful video of an incredibly successful campaign that spread love, caring and connected-ness throughout the world. May it inspire you to give someone a hug this Thanksgiving.
 

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A few months ago I saw a video someone posted on Facebook. It showed a woman having an absolute meltdown because her iPhone wasn’t working properly. Perhaps you experienced something similar as I heard many customers lost information with Apple’s latest system update.

 

The woman in the video was ranting and raving as if the world was coming to an end. She was visibly upset and extremely angry, to say the least.

 
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Unfortunately, videos like this one often become a source of comedy and amusement in the Internet world. How could anyone actually act that way over such a silly thing? But let’s be honest, we have all probably had an experience like this, especially when it comes to our technology.

 

Then I looked at the comments for this video, as I often find the comments as insightful and entertaining, if not more so, than the video itself.

 

A page or two into the comments, past all those that made fun of her or commiserated with her, was one that stopped me in my tracks. The comment was three short and simple words —

 

“First World Problem”

 

Whoa. That put life in perspective pretty fast.

 

If I took a moment to consider my life, I would have to admit that well over 99% of my supposed problems are first world problems.

 

I have my health. I have a roof over my head. I never go to bed hungry. Come on, do I really have problems?

 

The truth is, if malfunctioning technology, rush hour traffic, the grocery store being temporarily out of stock of my favorite brand, car problems or any other similar challenges are the kinds of things I think are “problems”, then I shouldn’t be annoyed . . . I should be grateful.

 

I can’t think of a better time than Thanksgiving to feel grateful for all of my first world problems.

 

Next week when we Americans sit down at our Thanksgiving tables with friends and family, why not take a moment to be thankful for all our first world problems. May they be all we ever have to worry about.

 

Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.”

– Alphonse Karr

 

Perspective is everything. I totally understand that even if our problems are first world problems, they still appear as problems in our lives that need to be handled. They can be just as frustrating and worrisome as other bigger problems.

 

But perhaps at least once a year, those of us enjoying the luxuries afforded to us in the first world should stop long enough to see the incredibly beautiful rose growing among our first world problem thorns.

 

If you want a good chuckle, take a look at the video below. I can’t think of a better person to highlight this concept, and poke fun of some of the things we think are problems, than Weird Al Yankovic.

 

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Many years ago I had a summer job that required a lot of driving here in New Jersey.   One day I was stopped at an intersection when I witnessed two drivers almost get into an accident.   One was going straight through the intersection while the other was turning.   With the piercing screech of brakes, they stopped just inches from each other.

almost 4As you might imagine, tempers flared.   Both drivers got out of their cars and started screaming at each other as their arms waved wildly in the air in animated fury.

 

“What the hell are you doing! You almost hit me!” screamed one.

 

Not missing a beat, the other driver fired back, “I almost hit you? I have the right of way! You almost killed me!”

 

This mini street drama played out for several minutes as their anger rose and their need to be right increased.

 

Neither of them backed down, but eventually they got back into their cars, their faces flushed with rage, still yelling at each other as they drove away.   I can only imagine the stories they told to their wives that night when they sat down for dinner.

 

As I drove from the “accident” scene, I couldn’t stop thinking about what just happened.   I couldn’t understand their reactions and the way in which they chose to interact with each other.    I felt as if they missed one very important fact regarding what just unfolded — they ALMOST crashed into each other.   What they missed in this whole experience was that they DIDN’T crash into each other.

 

As I played the scene over and over again in my mind, I couldn’t understand why they didn’t get out of their cars, run toward each other and hug, exclaiming, “Oh my God!   You almost hit me!   That was so close!   Thank you so much for stopping just in time.   You saved my life!   We are so lucky!   Look, no damage to our cars and we’re safe!   And thank God we didn’t hurt anyone else.   Wow, what a great day!”

 

I am continually amazed by the number of people who get upset about things that ALMOST happened but DIDN’T.   This makes no sense to me.

 

I almost fell.  I almost missed the turn.  I almost missed my train/bus/airplane.  I almost . . .

 

In each of these situations, what should be present more than anything else is gratitude.   Gratitude for what did happen rather than anger, drama or being upset about what didn’t happen.   With just a moment of reflection, any of these incidences can be seen as a blessing for which to be grateful.

 

Gratitude is the memory of the heart.

– Jean Massieu

 

As the beautiful holiday of Thanksgiving approaches, perhaps we should all take a breath and appreciate our angels who prevented something from ALMOST happening in our lives.

 

All too often we choose, usually unconsciously, to get caught up in the drama of a situation.   More times than not this leads to nothing more than wasted energy and emotion in life.   And life is too short and precious to do that!

 

And if you’d like to take a look at some AMAZINGLY CLOSE calls and some people who are thanking their lucky stars and angels, take 2 minutes to watch this incredible video!!
 
 

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With Thanksgiving just around the corner, tis the season for gratitude. However, while I am grateful for so many of the small and simple things in life, I thought I would turn the season on its head and challenge you to think differently.

 

This Thanksgiving, I want to know what are you UNgrateful for?

 

I know. A bit of a harsh question, but a very valuable one nonetheless.

 

Take a moment to think about all the things in your life that you are UNgrateful for. Those things that you have been tolerating and don’t like. I challenge you to take a look at your life and determine all those things that aren’t working for you.

 

Then, I challenge you to eliminate them. Or fix them. Whether it is that rattle in your car, that chore at home that needs to be completed, the friendship that no longer serves you, that unresolved conversation, or that decision you have repeatedly delayed.

 

Tolerations kill us! They suck our energy and don’t allow us to be present. They constantly nag us and tug at our subconscious, reminding us that something needs to be done. And until we tend to that toleration, we can never be at peace.

 

And isn’t that what the upcoming holidays are about – finding peace in our lives and being present to all we love? Being present to and grateful for all the untold blessings we have in our lives?

 

This holiday season, I challenge you to find at least one toleration in your life that prevents you from being eternally grateful for all you have, and once you have identified it, eliminate it. In doing so, you will be amazed at how much more space you have in your life for joy, love and a sense of peace

 

The best way to escape from a problem is to solve it.

– Alan Saporta

 

Getting rid of tolerations is simple math – addition by subtraction, as they say. Getting rid of what we don’t want in our lives provides the space for what we do want. The act of clearing allows us to feel more free, more at ease, and more at peace.

 

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