Week 2, Day 1 – Attitude of Gratitude
When we started this journey, I was really void of any ‘Spirit of Giving’ living inside me. My Spirit Meter was at ZERO and I was what I named myself, an ‘Empty Nester’. I felt like I was simply existing, completely unaware of what I was giving or receiving. Simply put, I was going through the motions. There was no reflection or thought to even ‘fake’ it – no thought to ‘what would Carla do?’ I just did whatever I did, and whatever that was, I don’t have a clue. Any giving I gave was not from a cheerful heart or a place of generosity. Perhaps it was out of the ingrained Law of Reciprocity.
Boy, doesn’t that sound like a miserable place to be? I think it does. And it was. Thankfully, though, it wasn’t always that bad. But, I’d felt it coming on for several months. If I can have full disclosure here – I basically turned the most fun thing in my life into a bore, chore and burden. I have always loved giving gifts and giving myself in other ways like volunteering. It has been the most rewarding and definitive part of myself.
With my blog and trying to turn my blog into a new thing, I gave and then I gave some more. I gave everything I had – my time, my money, my talent and my passion. I invested in people instead of advertising and I lost valuable relationships along the way. My ‘virtuous’ actions became a major disruption instead of my greatest asset.
After 2.5 years of over-giving, I laid my head in shame at being unable to give anymore. To anyone. There wasn’t even enough energy to give my family what they deserved. I was every adjective you could think of that described void, dazed and confused. Just an utterly and completely empty Spirit of Giving.
Maybe you, or someone you know, have been there, too. The realizations of last week’s research and study really helped lift the fog hanging over my eyes. Understanding it is possible to give too much, and that it doesn’t mean you are a horrible person by saying NO for Yes reasons, emotions are beginning to circulate through my body again. Now, I am able to feel the hurt. And, I can feel the aggression inside me.
But, I also feel a need to heal my mind and my soul. And, that can only be done by refueling my Attitude of Gratitude. As stated in the first paragraph above, I know I was giving but it wasn’t coming from a place of generosity or a cheerful heart. A generous giver is a grateful giver and somewhere along the way, I stopped being grateful, and became more great-full.
So, that’s our focus as we begin our second week, working on suppressing our great-fulness and lifting up our gratefulness!
NOTE: Last week was a lot of information and reflection on how we define the different roles in giving. This week, I’d like to take our mindful moments in a different direction. It’s important to not only reflect on what we learn, but to reflect where we are in the world. So, this week, our MM’s will be more like activities that offer a quiet time to clear our minds and just enjoy living in the moment we’ve been given.
*Mindful Moments – Take 5 minutes today to just sit. Look around you and make mental notes of what’s happening. Ask yourself some questions like – Are people smiling? Is the color on the walls soothing? If you are outside, how does the air feel against your skin? What do the colors of the trees represent to you? Now, take a deep breath, hold it for 2 seconds and then slowly release.
*Grateful Graces – What are you thankful for today?
To be continued…Week 2, Day 2 – Garbage In, Garbage Out.
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