#24 Ally Mona – Owning an attitude of gratitude
Need to put some extra gratitude in your tool kit as you begin 2015 in China? If so, tune in to this week’s wrap up as your host, Ally Mona walks through 9 different ways to consider gratitude.
A half-baked ‘thanks’ doesn’t do it when it comes to gratitude.
Gratitude. G is for GIVE IT. This hit me square in the face. Too often I take the help and love of my family and friends for granted and miss out on the opportunity to say an extra heart-felt thank you. 2015 resolution: slow down and appreciate people.
R is for RECIPROCATE IT. I had to mull this one over for a minute. Reciprocate means to give in return. Aren’t relationships better when there’s a mutual feeling of gratitude and worth displayed?
A is for ACKNOWLEDGE IT. Each day as I’m tucking my girls into bed, I try really hard to draw their attention to the awesome things in their lives—their warm beds, soft stuffed animals, and full tummies to name a few of my favorites—all to help instill in their little hearts an acknowledgement of the gratitude that we can, and should, feel for the little things in our lives.
T is for TREASURE IT. How does it feel when someone actually acknowledges you for going above and beyond for them? Amazing, right? We treasure those moments when our behind the scenes hard work is recognised. And we should do that for others.
I is for INSPIRE IT. Inspiring gratitude. Umm this one also took a minute for me to understand. How can one inspire gratitude? Well, you know those people right? Those that just can’t have a bad day? To them, a bad pollution day is just an excuse to exercise indoors instead of taking their usual 10 km run, and a horrendous ayi story is laughed off over a cuppa tea? Yeah yeah, that’s the person that I think of when I think inspiring gratitude. They’re unfluffable in their everyday lives, and somehow, that’s actually super inspiring! Another 2015 resolution: Inspire gratitude.
T is for THINK IT. Having a posture of gratitude is an intentional thing. Especially as expats, when life gets hard, or you’re having one of those days that almost sends you packing, this pillar of gratitude in your life, who knows, just may just be the thing that saves your assignment, your marriage, or your relationship with your kids.
U is for UNDERSTAND IT. For me to understand it, I had to go to dictionary.com. The actual definition of gratitude is “the quality or feeling of being grateful or thankful”. Ah, that’s it, the quality of. A half-baked ‘thanks’ doesn’t quite do it when it comes to gratitude. What’s one of your best qualities? Would say gratitude is on that list? I’m not sure that’d be one of the top ways people would describe me, but more gratitude probably needs to be intentionally cultivated to get it up there. Resolution #3.
D is for DO IT. Ah, more action here. Do gratitude. We’ll take our cue from Nike here and just do it. Even when you don’t feel like, please, find something in your life to be sincerely grateful for. Again, as expats, we can go through seasons where we feel the entire world is against us. Before bed, find 10 things you’re sincerely grateful each and every day. Sheesh, resolution #4.
And lastly, E is for EXPERIENCE IT. Personally encountering gratitude on a daily basis simply must be transformative. I say, must, because I’m not sure I’ve totally put this into practice and given it my best shot yet. I too have those moments when I’m overcome with negative emotion—be it frustration, sadness, anger, confusion. You name it, I’ve experienced it, most likely in relation to living overseas but also let’s be honest, just like you, life in general has thrown some pretty wild curveballs, and I’ve not always been ready to receive them.