Thursday, July 11, 2013
For a quick shift of mood or perspective I've recently learned the beauty of list making. I've always been a list maker but perviously they were generally toward the practical -tasks I needed to keep track of, things I wanted to do for myself, and elements of the future I want to create. That last one may seem less practical and more in line with the magic, it was intended to be.
I recently saw a video of an excellent talk given by Mike Robbins and followed it by reading both his books (ok, I devoured the first one and am halfway through the second one now) and becoming a super fan. While what he talks about is, basically, pretty common personal development stuff he presents it in a brand new way and clearly has a pretty strong grasp of the magic but with his background in sports he comes across as very much a man's man and it's a beautiful blend of qualities.
Following his advice I've started to make gratitude lists at least twice a day. Once in the morning to get me thinking in the best possible way and once in the evening when I can incorporate things that actually happened during the day and the ways that those things shifted my perspective and process.
When I initially read about this I thought that I kind of did this already and I wasn't super excited about incorporating it into my life but I'll try anything once or twice. As I wrote the first list I was really amazed at how I felt myself changing into another person, I felt my vision clear, I felt a little lightheaded and the results were amazing.
Much as we all know that there are many things we're grateful for, it's interesting how little we realize just how grateful we are until we actually sit and give them some undivided attention.
The first time I made a list it started with really obvious things like how grateful I am to have this lovely apartment that I live in. I knew this all along, just last fall when my building changed owners I thought about it a lot as I wondered if I'd be asked to move out. But at that time, wanting to embrace the possibility of change with a positive attitude, rather than think about how grateful I was to be here I thought about where I might want to move and how amazing it would be there.
As the list progressed I touched on all the every day things and eventually more spiritual things but each item I added amazed me at the feeling of actually expressing it. I'm very grateful to have all of my arms and legs and very grateful that they all work but I never think about it. I'm grateful for the freedom I have to make my own decisions independent of the needs of another, but rather than consider or express that I usually am thinking how nice it would be to have a boyfriend or a husband to share responsibilities with. It amazed me that to simply choose to look at what I have made such a huge difference and I know that I'll never go back. I've since been making lists every day. It was a great exercise to start up during the brief time when my meditation practice fell by the wayside. I do kind of wonder just how much of my time I can devote to the many practices I'm collecting but when I start to think that way now I only realize how grateful I am to have the time to do these things for myself.