One of the 8 Pillars of Joy as identified by The Dalai Lama and Reverend Tutu is Gratitude. It’s not just something to consider at Thanksgiving, but on a regular basis. And, according to “The Book of Joy,” gratitude is about embracing reality.

“Gratitude means moving from counting your burdens to counting your blessings…as an antidote to envy and a recipe for appreciating our own lives.”

Do you embrace reality or get hung up on how you wish things could be, or regret of how things didn’t turn out? We must start with Acceptance, not fighting reality. Accepting what is, what comes, and what will was. Accepting of ourselves, of our strengths, of our circumstances, and of one another. Once you are able to accept the reality around you, you can find gratitude in even the most simple things. You can be grateful for all that you have, all that you are, and all that is. Can you imagine being able to embrace such gratitude? What would that give you in your life?

The Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley created the Thnx4 Gratitude Journal (mobile-friendly, online and free) and the Gratitude Challenge. Mounds of research has shown that gratitude not only feels good, but has greater, long-lasting benefits for your life because “it’s an affirmation of goodness. We affirm that there are good things in the world, gifts and benefits we’ve received.” Gratitude strengthens our relationships, he says, “because it requires us to see how we’ve been supported and affirmed by other people.”

Join us on Thursday, March 1, 9:30-11am at Grace Church on Day Road. Our supportive community of strong women will welcome one another in discussion, over wonderful snacks and coffee/tea/hot cocoa, with reflective sharing, and while our young ones are in the expert care of our professional caregivers onsite. See you there!