Seal It with Gratitude
Which habit is more like you?
- Driving down the highway and self-talk focuses on the many examples of bad driving that you observe.
- Same highway and your radio/phone inform you about the unusual, most often negative, events of the day.
- Whichever is your information modality – reading the news or listening to it – at home, it’s dominated by the things that have gone wrong and the danger lurking in your midst.
- Driving down the highway and self-talk focuses on the many examples of beauty and abundance that you observe.
- Same highway and your radio/phone inform you about the richness of a choral composition, the benefits of meditation or the majesty of human achievement.
- Your information modality at home is dominated by the things that have gone right and the possibilities available to you and those you love.
The same scenarios could be asked regarding your speech. It would be a huge surprise if one listens to failures and speaks of successes, so the answers would probably align closely. The words we choose to receive and to express make our language environment. We are enveloped by the labels, and our thoughts and feelings are sealed tight. There is a justifiable argument among scholars as to which is first in conceptualizing, language or thought, but there is no question that language and thought are inextricably linked.
Those seemingly benign habits of how we engage our words while driving or relaxing at home are habits of the highest order. They are anything but benign. These habits actively extend to what you do, with whom you do it, and the form of your future actions, relationships and achievements. You cannot say/hear, read/write habitually in one vein and exist in another. Habits are not hard to break unless you’re trying to do it alone. NBCC coaches are skilled in having their clients recognize current habits and formulate constructive habits.
Erin Wathen of Saint Andrews Christian Church in Olathe, recently encouraged her parishioners to engage in the discipline of gratitude. “Of course, giving thanks is easier at some points of the journey than it is in others. That’s why walking in gratitude is a spiritual discipline-it takes work to focus on our blessings, even in painful and uncertain times; it takes intentional awareness to be thankful in all things, and not just when the season calls for it. It is lifelong work of the Spirit, and not something that we can, one day, check off of our list. But, once you get into the habit of seeking the abundance of life, you find a deeper contentment, an abiding sense of purpose, and an overwhelming sense of joy. In the simplest of everyday things, you begin to glimpse the holy.”
Say it, listen for it, read it, write it, and surround yourself with words of thanksgiving because gratitude seals its own reward.