“War, displacement, societal upheaval, familial upheaval, accidents that result in maiming or impaired mental functioning, and natural disasters—these events drastically affect health. Some people survive these events with perception and sense of self intact; most people do not. The normal responses to difficult events are grief, blame, withdrawal, or incapacitation. To survive unscathed is unusual; to be weak, unpredictable, suspicious, fearful, hurt, sad, cautious, blameful, indecisive, or angry is expected. Minor changes to reality can be unsettling and can cause many of the same reactions. Few people are unaffected by the ebbs of life.” – from Pond a Connected Existence
Expectations of no problems in life are expectations incorrect. Life presents struggles and challenges because that is the nature of life.
Expectations of ease and fun are expectations misleading. Ease and fun can be part of life, but they are not to be expected, rather to be cherished.
Approaching the ebbs of life with creativity and courage brings growth and understanding. Taking the storms and seeing beyond them brings appreciation and satisfaction.
Trenta is the large sized drink at Starbucks. Why is it used here? Because largeness is what we want when we’re being thankful. Largeness in feeling and largeness in expression!
Here are ways to add large sized thankfulness into your life:
- Add an Appreciation ritual to your eating. Consider all the people who contributed to your meal, from the people who worked in the fields harvesting the vegetables to the people who worked in the store or restaurant packaging the food or working the cash register. If your meal includes meat or dairy, consider the animals who gave their lives or milk for your nourishment.
- Add Appreciation of Abode into your weekly or daily schedule. This ritual can include going from room to room expressing thankfulness for the people who use these rooms or for the rooms themselves. This ritual can include looking at your home/apartment/tent from the outside and expressing thankfulness for the whole structure.
- Add “How wondrous is the sky” thankfulness to your daily routine. The first time you go outside, even if it’s just to quickly walk to your car, look at the sky and express thankfulness for it. Even if it’s raining or too hot.
Many more rituals can be added to your thankfulness quest:
- Considering the majesty of your body each time you go to the bathroom is one way.
- A daily Rising and/or Retiring ritual to start and end your day with thankfulness is balancing.
- Every time you choose a decorative item for your home (like a rug or a vase) or for your body (like an article of clothing or shoes), quietly give thanks that you have the ability to choose.
- On each birthday, consider the previous year and give thanks for all that happened in it—even the less good things. Then give thanks in advance for the coming year.
There are so, so many ways to add trenta thankfulness into your life. Remember: the larger, the more effective!