Grateful for . . . this month of gratitude
Tomorrow marks the end of December, of 2010, and of this blog series on gratitude. While I’m not sure that these posts have been particularly interesting to most people, they’ve proven enormously helpful to me. So to those of you who’ve been following, thanks for sticking with me! More arts-related content will return in the new year, Lord willing.
But for now, let me leave you with a few lessons learned from blogging gratitude:
Gratitude takes thought.
Gratitude is a feeling, but it requires thought. Otherwise gratitude could easily be misdirected or incomplete. Thinking about and articulating reasons for gratitude transforms fleeting and shallow feelings to lasting and focused appreciation.
Gratitude takes time.
I’m convinced that the main reason I’ve had trouble with gratitude is that I simply didn’t taken enough time to express it. It’s sort of like practicing — if you wait around for the urge to practice, you’ll never get around to it. There were several days this month when I didn’t really feel gratitude until after I had written about something or forced myself to think about it.
Expressing gratitude increases joy.
I posted this C.S. Lewis quote earlier in the month and have witnessed its truthfulness in my own life:
“I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation. It is not out of compliment that lovers keep on telling one another how beautiful they are; the delight is incomplete till it is expressed.”
After writing about why I was grateful for certain people or things, I found I enjoyed them even more. This is an encouragement to continue the practice of public gratitude; it’s also a caution to make sure I’m grateful for the right things and reserve particular time reflecting on the greatest reason and source for my gratitude.
Here are the top ten posts (traffic-wise) from this month of gratitude:
- Grateful for . . . parents
- Grateful for . . . brothers
- Grateful for . . . some holiday humor
- Grateful for . . . a fantastic weekend
- Grateful for . . . free in-home entertainment
- Grateful for . . . the musician’s life
- Grateful for . . . clever humor
- Grateful for . . . gig stories
- Grateful for . . . the morning routine
- Grateful for . . . the minivan