Winter has come swooping in for a long overdue visit. Temperatures have plummeted into the sub-zero realms of frost-bit warnings and wind-chill factors.
And I am warm inside my home.
I am grateful today for my warm home. For Ellie, the wonder pooch, lying on the floor behind my desk and Marley, the Great Cat, lying on Ellie’s bed. I am grateful for the life that we have created to allow us the luxury of this home. The luxury of our beds. The luxury of the food on our table, the heat that keeps us warm and the roof that keeps the weather from falling down upon us.
I think about the homeless shelter where I worked and know that today will not be a comfortable day for the 1,000 plus people who slept beneath its roof last night. The coming week of arctic chill will cloud people’s abilities to see the possibility of change. Despair will deepen. It always does in intemperate weather. Moods sour. Spirits dampen. And bodies grate up against each other seeking solace and respite from the feelings of ‘what’s the point’ that invade when the temperature plummets. I am grateful there are places like the shelter where people can come in and be safe from the cold.
I am grateful for the sound of water flowing over the waterfall in the fish tank which sits on top of the bookcase to my left and to my friend Dave who gave it to me. . I am grateful for the oceans that are home to countless fish and waterlife.
I am grateful for this day.
I am now entering my third week of ‘A Year of Making a Difference’ and I am learning as I go the significance of gratitude as the foundation of everything I do. Cleaning up someone else’s dog poop in the park is a statement of saying, “Thank you world. Thank you planet earth. I care about you and the people who inhabit this world. I am willing to do my part in taking care of you.”
Shoveling my walk and my neighbours walk is a statement of: “Thank you world. Thank you planet earth. I care about you and the people who inhabit this world. I am willing to do my part in taking care of you.”
It is a growing realization within me. Everything I do is a statement of how much I care — about myself, about others, about this world we share.
When I respond negatively, it is because I don’t care enough to do the right thing, for myself, others, this world we share. When I choose to criticism, complain and condemn, I am hurting myself and the world around me.
I am grateful for this place where I come every morning to focus on the difference I can make in the world when I choose to turn up and pay attention to what I’m doing, thinking, saying and how I’m being in the world.
I am grateful for the growing awareness that I am responsible for the difference I make. No one else can make my difference. I can’t make anyone else’s difference either, just as they can’t make mine. We are each 100% accountable for what we do. We are each 100% responsible for how we express our difference. And in my 100% I am 100% grateful.
I like living at 100% in everything I do.