May 17, 2012

Thought for a Thursday: Gratitude

Music Man and I had the craziest thing happen to us this week. (I swear I’ll have a whole post dedicated to it soon.) Last Friday, he got a random email from the Student Veterans of America, Illinois chapter offering him +1 the chance to go to a listening party and meet and greet with John Mayer.
Now, Music Man and I have been Mayer fans since the beginning so we jumped at the chance. Except that it was in Chicago. At 4:30. On a Tuesday.
We were both working, I had a dentist appt, there was the question of money, etc. I started filling my head with all sorts of negative crazy thoughts instead of enjoying this crazy, good chance we could have.
So, we worked out our work schedules, cancelled the dentist appt, and realized that the whole thing was free. We just had to get there.

So we did.

Except, anxiety-driven me freaked out at the $28 public parking lots, getting there on time, spending more money then we really should. Etc.

I didn’t ruin the night, though I almost did..and often do thanks to my anxiety…but I couldn’t just simply be thankful.


Thought for your Thursday: Why is it always so much easier to go to the negative thoughts? Why do we (or some of us) have such a hard time immediately thinking positively about a situation instead of negative? Could being thankful, even for a ridiculous parking ticket, change the mood and banish the anxiety? What if we went one whole day where we were thankful for everything? If we wrote it down, kept a day journal, and no matter what happened, we said “thank you for this opportunity/moment.” Because honestly, we may be getting the moment. But think about the millions of those who aren’t.

And so, on that thought, I think I’m ready to try it.
Maybe not the journal today…but something similar.
I start classes next Monday so in my head I have all this extra free time, right, since I don’t currently have a part-time job prospect. Of course, in imagining all this crazy free time (what’s homework?) I have a whole list of sweets to bake, things to do around the house, and crafts to complete. Because I’m such a crafty girl.
Actually, my bff is Crafty Girl. I’m just wannabe.

But I’m still going to attempt two projects I found on Pinterest that have to do with giving thanks.
My hubby is a huge positive thinker, but me, I need reminders. I’m working of shifting to the more glass half full outlook on life (especially since stress/anxiety is now linked to Alzheimers…more tomorrow).
And since we don’t have a house of our own yet… we haven’t done much to the apartment decoration-wise probably because we know it’s temporary…but I think we need too. Sometimes I feel like negativity festers here, even though I pray it away on a consistent basis. It keeps coming back.
Time to hit the curb buddy.

I like the idea of a thankful chain. I have some great music note paper left over from the wedding that would definitely fit us, and it would look great in our music room/office. Since we both spend a lot of time in there, perhaps  having reminders of the things in life which we are thankful for would boost both our music and writing.
Plus I made paper chains in kindergarten so I know I can do this.



Secondly, I like the idea of The Thankful Tree as some sort of centerpiece in our living room/dining room.

thanks tree

Not only is it a huge visual reminder, and something others will ask about, but it makes me think of Colossians 2:7 (NLT)

"Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness."

This is truly how I should be living. My roots are in Him, my faith is strong, but I don’t have the whole overflowing with thankfulness down.
This year is a journey of me working on this. And I am. And some days it works. And some days it doesn’t.
So it’s time to try something new. Something visual. Something that I can see everyday and think, “oh yeah. I was thankful for that three weeks ago. Why shouldn’t I be today?”

Time to breathe and give thanks.


Seek peace. Choose Joy. Live Faith.