What’s In Your Roomful of Gratitude?

Posted 01.06.2014

jan6-1As the first full work week of the new year begins, it’s going to be all too easy to get caught up in the swirl of the “human doing” and lose sight of the “human being.”  Here’s a simple idea to help you stay connected with what matters most as the pace picks up.

At least once this week, stop in whatever room you’re in and look around for a few minutes.  Ask yourself, “What’s in this room that reminds me of something I’m grateful for?”  See if you can come up with at least ten things.  My guess is that if you really stop, slow down a bit and consider it you’ll come up with more than ten.

I did this exercise in my bedroom the other day.  Just as an example to stir your thinking, here’s my illustrated top ten list (not in order!) of things that make me feel grateful.  What’s on your list?

jan6-2Electricity:  I know that being able to plug your fan or computer into the socket is pretty basic and easy to take for granted.  If you were part of the 20% of the people in the world who don’t have access to electricity (according to the International Energy Agency), it would seem like a pretty big and amazing deal.

jan6-3Music:  How great is it that you can listen to anything from Mozart to Macklemore on a device you can carry around in your pocket?

jan6-4Kids and Family:  The picture with the jet is one of my boys when they were nine and five years old with a couple of Air Force T-38 pilots.  The picture on the mug is one of four generations of Eblin men (my grandfather, my dad, me and my oldest son when he was a baby).

jan6-5Clean Water:  The next time you brush your teeth or flush your toilet, you might consider that, according to the World Health Organization, 2.6 billion people in the world don’t have access to basic sanitation systems.

jan6-6Love of My Life:  The children in the picture to the left are my girlfriend, Diane, and me circa 1986.  I am extremely grateful to have found the love of my life almost 28 years ago.

jan6-7Clothes:  I feel very fortunate to have clean clothes in my closet.

jan6-8Desk Lamp:  It sure is nice to be able to see what’s on my desk when I need to work at night.

jan6-9My Bass:  Diane bought this for me as a major, major surprise for our first married Christmas together.  I used to play a red bass in a band in junior high and high school (we stunk but made up for it in stage theatrics) and this adult version reminds me of fun times I has as a kid.

jan6-10Yoga Mat:  I am very grateful for the strength, flexibility, perspective and friendships that yoga has brought me over the past three years.

Pinocchio and Jiminy Cricket:  This 1939 wooden Pinocchio doll belonged to my mom when she was a little girl.  jan6-1She always put it out for Christmas when I was a little kid and it was my favorite thing.  She gave it to me as a gift last Christmas.  Diane gave me the little Jiminy Cricket figurine the night before I started my last corporate job to remind me to “let my conscience be my guide.”  They both make me feel grateful for the people who have shaped me along the way.

So, it took me a lot longer to write this post than it did to look around my bedroom and find things that make me feel grateful.  I actually came up with about 20 but sharing all of them would have been “too much information” in more ways than one.

Why not give it a try yourself?  It could be your office, your bedroom, your living room, your kitchen.  It doesn’t really matter; I’ll bet if you take a few minutes to stop and look, you’ll find at least ten things that push your gratitude button.

What’s on your list and why?