“Every time I have some moment on a seashore, or in the mountains, or sometimes in a quiet forest, I think this is why the environment has to be preserved.”
~ Bill Bradley
In the morning the city
Spreads its wings
Making a song
In stone that sings.
In the evening the city
Goes to bed
About its head.
~ Langston Hughes
We are deeply affected by environments. Man-made or natural, each place we spend time in influences our own energies.
Whether we have travelled widely, or stayed closer to home, all of us can find environments to be grateful for.
I am constantly thankful for my farm, and the natural beauty of the Byron Shire.
Libraries are also a favourite haunt, as are good coffee shops – each has their own special magic for me. I adore the tiny winding streets of inner-city Melbourne with its cafes and hidden arcades of treasures.
I have been moved by the wide open majesty of the Australian Outback, seduced by the sunshine and balmy breezes of tropical islands, and brought into contemplative spiritual spaces in churches, shrines and temples across the world.
What environments have moved you? What places do you go to replenish your spirit? What places are like medicine for your Soul?
Truly, we have so much to be thankful for.
Counting Our Blessings and Using our Gratitude Rock
If you need a detailed reminder of our daily process, you can review it here in Day 1 of the Gratitude Challenge.
- List five Blessings in your journal, explaining why you are grateful for each one.
- Count your Blessings off on your fingers, summoning positive emotion and saying Thank You from your heart for each one.
- Retrieve the paper from under your Gratitude Rock. Hold it in your hands and say Thank you for the wonderful ideas flowing into my life. I am grateful for this abundance of positive change. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you! Fold up the paper and carry it around in your pocket or wallet.
- Tonight before you go to sleep, hold your Gratitude Rock and affirm I am richly Blessed. I have an Abundance of Good in my life. Visualise one thing you have been grateful for today. Swell that positive energy up in your heart like a beautiful golden light, and give a heart-felt Thank You, Thank You, Thank You to the Universe, then imagine a tiny shower of golden light travelling from your heart into your Gratitude Rock.
- Still holding your Gratitude Rock, bless your fellow travellers on this Gratitude Journey by sending them golden light, and saying Thank you. I Bless You. I intend for you Love, Miracles and Abundance. Know that as you are saying this for them, they are also saying this for you. Feel that connection and gratitude and know that there is real love and support for you here. Place your rock back beside your bed, and go to sleep, cocooned in this good energy.
If all you do each day is these first five steps, know that is enough.
For those of you who would like to do more towards developing an attitude of gratitude, read on!
Gratitude for a Sense of Place
Think of a place that you are grateful for. It could be something that speaks to you of majesty or freedom, it could be a place where you feel relaxed or safe, it could be a place where your creativity always flows…
Ponder for a moment what makes this particular place special to you.
Then ask yourself, how can I bring some of that magic into my day today?
Find a small way to connect into that energy. Celebrate and give thanks for that blessing of environment, and its gifts for you.
Here are some of my own paths to that connection:
- Coconut scented body lotion to remind me of tropical holidays
- A Thai meal, to connect me back to one of my favourite countries
- Sitting in the sun at lunchtime, to remind me of the freedom and relaxation of a summer day at the beach
- Coffee in a dark-walled local cafe that somehow transports me back to Venice
- Flicking through photos or travel brochures
- Watching clips of favourite places on youtube
- Visiting a French boulangerie patisserie in Brisbane that evokes Europe every time
Life is a precious gift, just waiting to be unwrapped and enjoyed!