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One Word

On New Year’s Day, Pinterest, Facebook and Twitter were flooded with people talking about “the word.”

Now, what is this word, exactly? For these people, this word defined their year and helped them focus and/or re-focus.

I’m not really one for making New Year’s Resolutions lists, however I’ve spent quite a bit of time thinking about the one word that caught my attention and worked its way into my heart.

My dry erase board on my refrigerator has words scrawled all over it.

My notepad on my desk has a free flow of words on it, words that flowed from me when I stopped and thought about what I want to for my family and friends this year.

There are so many words flowing from my heart, but the theme that I noticed is gratitude and thankfulness.

When I sat quietly staring at those words, the one word my heart kept whispering was “gratitude.”

I wasn’t really sure if there was even a difference between gratitude and being thankful, so I Googled it and came across this quote:

Thankfulness is the beginning of gratitude. Gratitude is the completion of thankfulness. Thankfulness may consist merely of words. Gratitude is shown in acts.
- Henri Frederic Amiel

That quote resonated with something deep inside me.

Nathan and I teach our children to be thankful, to say “Thank You,” but do we teach them to show gratitude?  Do we truly exemplify gratitude with our actions, or do we show them that the act of saying “Thank You” is enough?  I tell my children over and over: “Stop saying you’re sorry for what you did, and show me you’re truly sorry by changing your behavior.”

Isn’t this the same thing?  I can say “Thank You,” which is a big thing, but then do I continue going about my day unchanged, or do I pay that forward with gratitude?  Do I take the attitude of gratitude with me wherever I go?

Nathan and I have so many things to be grateful for: a roof over our heads, healthy children, love, passion, food in our refrigerator, cars to drive….

For all of that I am grateful, and I need… no I want, to start showing that daily.

Another quote about gratitude that struck me:

Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.
- Melody Beattie

I read that quote and something about it “a house into a home,” ” a meal into a feast,” perspective. How I look at things, with a grateful heart, or just at face value. I can choose how my days will go, how I will see every person in my life, every event, every opportunity… it’s up to me how I see them and react to them.

And as I sit and write this, sharing my word, my heart, I realize my word isn’t “gratitude”… it’s “perspective.”

Gratitude will be part of my perspective on my life, but what I want to focus on this year, what I want to teach my children is it’s all about your perspective, because that truly changes everything.

Last year after writing a post entitled “Let Me Be Enough”, a very talented friend sent me an amazing gift.

Lisa Lehmann Enough Leather Wrap Bracelet

A leather wrap bracelet that she made for me, with the word “enough” stamped on it — without even realizing it, and without planning it, “enough” was my word for 2012. Realizing that who I am is enough.

This year I want something with perspective on it, something that I can wear daily to remind me to check mine… maybe another wrap bracelet or a necklace.

Do you make resolutions?  Do you have a ‘Word of The Year’?  What do you do to remind yourself of that word?

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