Gratitude Practice

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                                             Winter sunset over water, originally uploaded by piggley.
Thanksgiving has come and gone and as I watch a sunset not nearly as glorious as the one above I find myself hungry, not for more mashed potatoes orThanksgiving fare but rather hungry for time alone, time for gratitude practice. 
So tonight I will share  my "grateful" list, with you.  My gratitude practice started years ago and has become a life discipline, a practice of sorts I replay every morning within the first hour of waking up. My sisters laugh at me and give me a hard time for my polyannism, they snicker at my tendency to find the silver lining in the grimiest situation.  Truth be told I understand why they are betwixed by my perspective as I hold the family record for disasters, tragedies, losses and disappointment. So of course everyone expects that by now I'd be a tad bit jaded, perhaps even negative. Not a chance. Truth is, when you've fallen down as much as I have you can't help but start each day humble,  each day counting your blessings.
 Hmmm grateful. Tonight as I sat down at my computer to compile my grateful list, to practice gratitude I was reminded of the reality that is; small and big businesses are in a tail spin, many of the people I team with are concerned about our country, the economy and their businesses. The newspaper articles and on-line stories I followed today of terrorist attacks in India and the Walmart employee who died after being trampled to death are real. It is admidst this reality I intend to  practice gratitude, I chose a grateful stance.
Being grateful does not somehow dis-allow other feelings.  I have been grateful and elated, grateful and sad, grateful and abundant minded, grateful and disappointed.  Over the years I've come to believe  the more difficult the times the more important gratitude is.
So yes, my sisters are right in some ways much like a POW after his or her release I've become more grateful, because of the difficulties I've journeyed through…
Gratitude is a life practice that keeps me surrendered to what is…
Tonight I am grateful for:
 Rosie Chaney and Zachary Paul ….
for my sisters, cousins, friends and clients.
 I'm grateful for laughter; its healing medicinal qualities.
 I'm thankful for forgiveness and compassion.
I'm grateful for  fresh fruit and vegetables for gluten free sweet potato pie, for the Christmas tree my kids and brother in law cut down today, that fills our house with the scent of evergreens.
I'm thankful for the lake I was on this weekend,  the snow that is falling in the mountains, the ocean out my front door and  the river I walked along yesterday.
I'm thankful for my Creator and his signature that surrounds me daily.
 I'm grateful for good books, my passion for words, the manuscript I am creating, the dreams that wake me up in the middle of the night, the people I've met this year that have touched my heart, awakened my soul and reminded me of possibilities… 
I'm thankful for the freedom to be an entrepreneur, the passion and high of helping other people realize their dreams. I'm thankful for the courage to pursue that which is not easy and that which is yet to be realized.
I'm grateful for breath and for the people who hugged me this weekend. I'm thankful for my clients success and for a good soy latte. I'm thankful for my friends text message today reminding me she misses me.
I'm grateful that I believe… the best days for you and I are still ahead of us.
I'm grateful…
Pam Hoelzle
at twitter pamhoelzle

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