Ah – the Power of Gratitude 2

Gratitude: Just Say Thanks!

By Sandye Linnetz

Can you see the holiness in those things you take for granted – a paved road or a washing machine? If you concentrate on finding what is “good” in every situation, you will discover that your life will suddenly be filled with gratitude, a feeling that nurtures the soul.


It felt like I had nothing to be grateful for… At the age of 58 I was ready to retire and be a tennis playing, volunteering, lunch-with-the-ladies, stay-at-home wife. Then, within the course of only 18 months, I left the business I had loved, my husband of almost 20 years decided he wanted “out”, my dear father died, I had surgery on my knee, a 28 lb. box of books dropped on my face and a car accident that sent me into 8 months of rehab.

Then I read some books on gratitude. You can imagine how well that went over with me. It’s one thing to say “thank-you” for the good stuff in life – how was I going to be grateful for my current situation? I didn’t feel grateful for any of it! I didn’t deserve to have my wonderful life turned completely upside-down. None of it was fair!

The instructions were simple. Find a quiet place to sit. Close your eyes. Think of 10 things to be grateful for that would not have been possible without the circumstances that you have defined as “bad”.

It was after 10pm… dark, but a magnificent star-filled summer night, so I decided to do this exercise on the patio. I sat there for what felt like hours and came up with nothing. Really, what good has come out of any of this? Then #1 hit me… like a ton of bricks; if I hadn’t sold my company and my husband had not left, I would not have been able to spend all that wonderful, quality time with my father before he died. Didn’t go over there much with my husband. Went there a lot on my own. I got to be complete with my dad.

And, if I hadn’t had the knee surgery there’d be no possibility of ever playing tennis again. I love tennis. This was getting easier. I wouldn’t have been surrounded with so much love from my girlfriends (and I never really liked that whole scene before). I got my relationship back with my kid brother (who was persona non gratis with my ex). There was plenty of time for me to be with my mom and support her through her loss. I wouldn’t have been able to have grilled onions in my food (He hated onions). I wouldn’t have joined the botanical gardens or realized how happy I felt walking through them…

By the time I got to #45 I was laughing through my tears. What a shift! The more I found to be grateful for… the more I found to be grateful for!

Some people grumble because roses have thorns; I am thankful that

the thorns have roses.

~Alphonse Karr

Gratitude is infinitely more dependent on your attitude than on your circumstances. What occurs is insignificant compared to how you hold the occurrence – what you make it mean and how you judge it.

Be willing to let go of your judgments and experiment with shifting your point of view. There is always another way to look at any given situation. You are responsible for the way it is – not guilty for whatever happened – and you (your words and your actions) are actually at the source of your life. That’s powerful stuff. Exercise the “muscle” that has you look for the blessing within the crisis. Don’t stop looking – there is something to be grateful for in any situation. That’s the way it is. .

Life is like a jigsaw puzzle… except we can’t look at the picture on the box

to see that it will all fit together.

~Sandye Linnetz

Helen Ebdon says:

To push past such a difficult time and see the blessings … that is something to be grateful for … inspiring.

Diana says:

If only the whole world took that exercise in gratitude seriously– oh the LOVE that would flood the planet! I’m a huge fan of finding the gift in every so called “negative experience.” We live in a world of polarities. there is no up without a down. No dark without light. Etc. And the gifts in those “negative experiences” are so profound…if only we could make with the delivery of the gifts. Good stuff, Sandye! xo You are a ROCK STAR!