Thursday, March 24, 2011

A wise friend

somewhat continuing the theme of my last post i wanted to share a short piece of writing with you.
A friend of mine named Lucas passed away a while ago, he was wise behind his years and kept journals. His younger brother Nathan shared some of his journal entries and they had a real impact on my life, he gave me permission to put them on my blog and i would like to share them with you in hopes it might have an impact on your life as well.
this is from december 21, 2003

"How many times do we awake in the morning and immediately begin our day with a negative thought? "I'm so tired," or "I really don't want to get out of bed," or "I wish I didn't have to work/shave/help the kids get ready/fix breakfast/go to school/etc." I have certainly been guilty of this throughout my life.

The first thing we're taught, as Jews, to do in the morning is to thank Hashem for returning our spirits to our bodies, so we can live another day. What a great way to wake up: with gratitude. But here, too, Jews are just as guilty as everybody else-- as soon as they thank God upon waking, they begin with a stream of negative thoughts which no doubt makes mornings that much more difficult to bear. Why can't we, Jew and gentile, religious and secular, begin our mornings by making an accounting of all the things we're grateful for? Because we are not living in the here and now, and because we are not attentive to just how much we actually have to be thankful for.

Hot showers. Clean water. Soap and shampoo. Indoor plumbing. Towels and clothing. Toothbrushes and toothpaste. A warm bed. Food for our bellies. Various forms of entertainment. Transportation. Heat and or air conditioning. A healthy body which can move around, or even the medications we have to remain healthy. A roof over our head, to shelter us from the elements. Life. And most importantly, the renewed chance, every single day, to become a better person and to make a difference in the world. We could definitely come up with much more things to add to this list if we were just attentive to what we have to be thankful for.

Count your blessings, every single day. And be thankful for your adversities, because at the end of the day, you have still been blessed immensely. With as much turmoil and pain that exists in the world, we could all use a daily reminder that we have much to be thankful for. Whether we offer that gratitude up to God, or to ourselves for all of our hard work, bringing attention too all of the good we have in our lives is undoubtedly a transformative way to begin our days.

It is amazing what a little centeredness, and an appreciative attitude can do for our overall psyche. We have got to stop focusing on the bad, and begin focusing on the good. This newfound gratitude, which just takes a little cultivation to become routine, will assuredly translate into altruism, which turns into us becoming like God, and healing those we come into contact with.

And that, there, is yet another thing to be grateful for."

i am not religious, but still found a lot of meaning. I read this the same night i found out he died. i was sad for his passing, but the next day was one of the best days i had had in very long time.
if you guys would like to read more of his writing let me know in the comments. his brother shared a few other journal entries too. all equally meaningful and inspiring.

15 comments:

  1. I completely agree, having an attitude of gratitude serves me well throughout the day. Great post man.

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  2. Read this and it hits home. Not because i am a Jew. But because i always wake up with the "I dont feel like getting up" approach. I guess it helps to have a spiritual figure to help you out of bed in the morning and live your life.

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  3. Your friend was absolutely right. I wake up to negativity every day. I should try to change but I think it's embedded into my personality already.

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  4. interestingly, studies have shown less stress does help overall health even to the point of just not being in debt. nothing else considered but debt and there's a strong correlation to health, it's crazy. so yes, attitude!

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  5. You know what helps me get out of bed in the morning? Those clever alarm apps for iPhone. They wake you when your brainwaves are closer to awake, so you feel less tired when you wake up. Give it a shot, you never know!
    :)

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  6. I also wake yo to negativity every single day. I need to change.

    Great post man. Love it

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  7. I also wake up to a bit of negativity, and he is indeed right about how you should be glad that you have what you have.

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  8. Its so easy to be negative, but being positive takes work! I like this because its such a great reminder.

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  9. I resonate with your words. I whole heartedly agree.

    Gratitude goes a long way

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  10. i have no reason not to agree with you.

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  11. Finding out some way which gives those thougs to you every morning... Reading blog like this is great and wakes thoughts but oh, how quikly do we (at least I) forget these fine thoughts. I have written some aforisms on post-it -papers and attached them to my desktop so every time I raise my sight from computer I see them. I recommend that ;) sadly it doesn't help me on mornings...

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