I recently celebrated my 40th birthday. It was a real challenge. Everyone tells me its just a number but I believe it is a significant milestone to reach in one’s life. Whilst being flooded with love and attention from family, friends and work colleagues, I took a few minutes out to visit my local animal shelter with food and toys to share my good fortune. I have been quietly giving thanks in this way for the past year. Very few people know that I do this, although by publishing this article I am probably about to change that. I am not looking for praise or credit for being “good”, I just want to share with you a simple little thing you can do to make a difference in your own life.
The Interconnectedness Of All Things
In early 2008 both my husband and I had a strong desire to change jobs. We were both ready for a change of career. This desire became a very strong intention for both of us. Before long we both got the new jobs we desired and started them on the same day.
These changes simply couldn’t be dismissed as coincidences. I realized that by identifying this desire for change and focusing on it we were essentially asking the universe to help make it happen.
We got what we needed and asked for. What could we do but say thank you? Here’s the problem though, how do you say thank you to God or the divine or the universal consciousness? The only way we could think to do it was by helping someone else so that the positive energy that helped us could flow on. We chose to make a donation to our local animal shelter which is the charity that is closest to our hearts. Others will benefit from your good fortune if you say a simple thank you. Just choose a method that is meaningful for you.
“Celebrate a substantial raise by cheerfully taking the garbage out for a week. Or show you appreciate getting a new client by walking the dog of the old lady next door.” – Veronique Vienne, The Art of Imperfection: Simple Ways to Make Peace with Yourself
The experience of giving thanks helps us practice mindfulness and remember how we received help when we needed it. It would have been easy to get caught up in excitement and business and forget how these new opportunities came to be. Instead we paused and gave thanks and continue to do so every time our desires come true, (or I turn 40!).
How do you give thanks?