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  • Writer's pictureBeth Hobday

Graciousness and Gratitude

As much as I bitch and complain, I love this life. Every morning I watch the sunrise. I feel blessed that I am living in this body on this planet and getting to experience pure magic as I watch the clouds collect colors and splash them across the sky. It is breathtaking and in these moments I feel the most grateful. I accidentally typed graceful and I think that word is perfect. When we are in a state of gratitude, we are in flow, and therefore our bodies hold more grace. In these moments I feel the most graceful and grateful. It’s true.

Time warps when we are in these moments. You think you could spend forever hanging in time, and funny enough, time is “hanging out” for you. Have you ever got lost in thought only to have your conscious mind tap you on the shoulder and say, “Don’t forget about your obligations!” You snap out of it and realize that those 10 minutes in thought were two in real life. It’s a wonderful feeling. Geeze, you could have spent five minutes now that you know how slow time was moving.

When we are in a state of being (just being) we are living how God, or the Universe, intended us to be living. We are here to experience life; to be stewards of the Earth and each other. When we find ourselves “up in the clouds” or “in the zone” we are truly living. We all may have different trajectories in life, but one thing is the same: life is meant to be enjoyed.

If life is at an all-time low for you, now is the best time to find time to “check out”. I do not mean losing yourself in social media or television. Those are other people’s ideas of life. What you want is a time when you can be alone with your thoughts. This could be anything from watching the sunrise or sunset to playing with your children. When we play,, our brains are at their most active and neurons are firing in all directions. This is why play is so incredibly important to young people. If you have strong hopes of avoiding dementia and other brain-related diseases when older, then I suggest you make playtime important as an adult, too. I find scheduling time with my child to play is beneficial, because we are both getting something out of it. He is activating new parts of his brain while also experiencing bonding time with his mom. Even if we’re playing something that does not spark my imagination, when we play together quietly, I can go off in my head and daydream. I can even share my daydreams out loud with him which sparks conversation. Being connected to your children and their dreams creates a bond that stays strong.

A key is remembering it is perfectly okay to have different dreams; it is healthy for everyone to have different dreams in the household. This is what keeps things alive and colorful, by being able to share each other's differences and everyone being cool with it. I understand not every family can be so lucky. I have many friends who were ostracized from their families because they came out to them. I also know people who have lived in abusive situations. Sadly enough, abuse is usually coming from someone who was never allowed to feel comfortable with themselves. Sharing our differences and accepting others for theirs is an amazing way to begin to feel comfortable with yourself and let your true colors shine. Like it or not, you are you, and the world has to deal with it.

I love to take walks. Hiking in the woods is even better because I am surrounded by nature. Downtowns can be just as inspiring. Walking is an amazing way

to get lost in your thoughts or just to enjoy the world around you. I believe daydreaming is just as important as gratitude. They both involve us letting go and releasing into something beyond our selves.

Getting lost in the moment and feeling immense joy puts a smile on your face. You may look crazy to others because you are smiling for “no reason”, but you know why you’re smiling and that is all that matters. Find time for yourself today, even if it’s with other people. Enjoy the moments and circle back to those joyous feelings in between the moments. You’ll be smiling all day long in no time.

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