This time of year causes people to be reflective. People tend to take a closer look at the things they have, what they accomplished this year, their life and with thanksgiving, people think a lot about what they are thankful for. This time of the year also have people thinking about spiritual matters, what they think about things that are going on around them or in the world and most important this time of year causes people to start thinking about their plans for next year.
What are you thankful for?
I hear so many people struggle with trying to balance being truly thankful for what they have while questioning and even struggling with “why bad stuff happens to good people”. This is a challenge to understand, especially when you see the tragedies that have taken place just last week in Rwanda and Paris. What we have known since the beginning of time is that there are other forces out there and these forces or spirits as I call them are not always good. In fact, we know that the devil or the evil one’s purpose is to cause destruction and mayhem.
Then what should we do when bad things happen to good people? How can we be thankful when so much crazy happens to us, our love ones or to people around us.
First, start by making a list of all the things you are thankful for. This list can be the start of a dream inventory, because once you start listing what you have, it will bring up for you what you don’t have. Here is the key though. Instead of dwelling on what you don’t have, turn that list into what you want and let that list be the impetus for your dreams. Dreams in this context are a list of things that you want for yourself or the people you love. I encourage people to try to come up with a list of 100 dreams or things that they want. The things that we want can be gadget, toys or possessions, but they can also be community things, environmental wishes or world related desires that you can support on a small or local scale. The key is to allow your imagination to run free when listing your dreams.
After compiling a list of the things you have that you are thankful for and the list of the things you want. Start thinking about how you can accomplish some of the things on your dream list, so that you will have even more to be thankful for next year. Here is a small sample of my lists:
Thankful for: My God, my wife and daughters, my grandbaby, our health, extended family, friends, my business, my network and referral partners, my pets, the girls I coach and their families.
My Wants: Have a million-dollar business, complete my second book, become a national speaker on important issues, pay off my house, buy my wife a new car, plan a family trip, shoot a round of 80.
This exercise reminds me of all of the wonderful blessings I have while keeping focused and moving toward those carrots in front of me which help push me in the direction of what I want. Although this is a small sample size of both lists, a list like this can be important, especially once we turn the dreams into Specific, Measurable, Accountable, Realistic, Time-bound goals. Dreaming SMART makes it easier for us to achieve our goals because SMART goal setting becomes realized goals, which become achievements. Achievements realized lead to enduring success and fulfillment.
Which keeps us thankful and happy.