So as it turns out I am a really sucky blogger. I LOVE to blog. I love to write down my feelings, memories, thoughts. Yet I always find myself saying "I'll get to that later" "I'll write that down later" Does it boil down to not caring enough? Or getting side tracked with the more shallow and time consuming activities? IE: Facebook, Instagram, Zumba.com?? Do I overbook my day with work, tasks, ideas, when really all I wanna do is kick my feet up with the fam bam and hang out so blogging gets pushed further and further down the list of things to do??? I really don't know. BUT...here's an entry just because.
Brian and I are were asked to put on a fireside tonight for the youth in our church/ward. The Bishop of our ward said that we can pretty much talk on whatever topic we want. I was toying with the idea of marriage, happiness, being proud to be a Mormon...Brian was really impressed to speak on Gratitude. Once he suggested it, I was totally onboard.
Here are a few of the things I am going to share.
You cannot be happy in life without gratitude. Being grateful for your blessings, your life, even being grateful for your trials will make you HAPPY! And don't we all want to be happy?
So how can we be grateful and happy when things aren't going quite the way we want them to go or when we feel our lives are turned upside down?
I remember when my dad was told he had cancer. He never complained, not once. He wasn't scared, he wasn't disappointed, he wasn't mad, you want to know what he was? Grateful. Grateful for cancer??? How would you even begin to think that having cancer is something to be grateful for? You see, my dad was always a step ahead of the rest, and he understood that with trials you are refined to a much better version of yourself. How can we progress, how can we be strong when we don't have trails to strengthen us?
My dad attended church with a very well known leader in the Mormon LDS faith, Neal A Maxwell. He held a very high calling in our church and was one of the best men my dad had ever had the privilege of meeting, let alone calling friend. Neal had cancer and died from cancer. My dad saw the spiritual growth that occurred in Neal as he and his family were going through this. (I also believe our own personal trials are chances for growth for our friends, family, associates, co workers... ) My dad told me "How can I see Neal Maxwell in heaven and stand beside my friend without going through some major trials?"He almost looked at this trial as a badge of honor b/c he knew the Lord was testing him. He was such a great example of gratitude.
As I look back on those dark days where my eyes were swollen, red, and my heart was broken as I lost my hero I am grateful for that trial as I know that I am a stronger person because of it. I could no longer lean on my dad for those hard to answer questions, talks and lessons in church, phone calls of comfort, my listening ear, by biggest fan. I now had to lean on myself, on my own understanding, my own gut feelings. I learned to lean more on my husband. My dad's death pushed me to be a better person, more loving, more kind to others, more understanding of others downfalls and my own b/c these were the things he believed in, the things he dedicated countless hours to teaching his children and I didn't want all that to go to waste. I wanted people to look at me and think "She is like her dad"
I remember a video Brain showed me once. It's just a few minutes long and worth it.
There is an article I found. 5 steps to a happy life with a positive attitude. Here's a little recap of each step.
1. Believe happiness is a choice
"Sure this isn't always easy, but it is always, always an option. Teaching myself to see that happiness is a choice has been one of the greatest things I've ever done for myself. Now if I find myself in a bad situation, I know that it's up to me to find the good, to be happy regardless of what's happening around me.
2. Rid your life of negativity
"If you want to live a positive, joyful and happy life, you cannot-absolutely CANNOT- be surrounded my negative people."
3. Look for the positive in life
"There is the positive aspect in everything. In every person, in every situation, there is something good. Most of the time it's not all that obvious. We have to look. And sometimes we have to look hard. Everything good and bad is a learning experience. So at the very least you can learn from bad experiences. However, there's usually even more to it than that. If you really take the time to look, you will usually find something good, something really positive, about every person or situation."
4. Reinforce positivity in yourself
"Yes, you can practice being positive. The best and easiest way to do this is to be positive when it comes to who you are. Tell yourself you're awesome. Tell yourself you look good. Tell yourself that you love and accept yourself completely. Tell yourself you did an awesome job at work or raising your kids or whatever it is you do."
5. Share happiness with others
"Share your wealth of positivity with the world. The best way: BE NICE. Tell someone they look nice today, tell someone they did a great job on that presentation. Tell your parents/children (or both) how much you love them and how great they are.
To wrap this up, because I need to see what the heck is going on in the kitchen with my kids who are fighting (which I am going to find the good in right?? :D)
Attitude of Grattitude.
"You cannot be both angry and grateful at the same time. Start counting your blessings and miracles in your life, start looking for them and you shall find more. What's there not to be grateful? You are alive and breathing! Realize how lucky you are and all the abundance in your life"
As all things in life---I'm working on it.
I have so much to be grateful for. I feel very blessed to have the life I have. And to have my dad as such a visual, tangible, example of gratitude...even when you can't imagine being grateful...how can I not try to emulate this so hopefully my kids can say the same about me.
Talk to you soon!
Hopefully real soon!!!