Wednesday, January 9, 2013

My Treasure Hunt

Sometimes being on the back end of the holiday season leaves me in a slump, like my feet are stuck in mud. I'm supposed to be moving forward. So I tell myself to get up and move on, walk your talk. And that takes some figuring where I want to go and how to get there.

 Today we're so busy solving problems and meeting challenges, it's easy to push through each day not noticing the mud on our shoes. But now I see the mud on mine, so I've been looking for ways to recapture some of that inner spark that will move me on. Where I want to go is back to a joyful attitude about my life in spite of the challenges life brings. And in order to get there, I think I need to give that inner child part of me some playtime from the heart. So I've come up with 2 ideas that might work well.

When eating bamboo sprouts, remember the man who planted them.  Chinese Proverb

Next to love, gratitude is one of the most powerful healers, but as time passes I forget to use it. Sometimes I don't see what I have in my life that deserves gratitude. It's just taken for granted. And when that awareness is missing, a sense of joy gets lost. To regain a joyful attitude, I need to get back into my habit of feeling grateful for the good stuff that helps lift my spirit when a challenge hits. And I need reminders.

Every day my inner child can show me what I do not see.  Anonymous

I don't know if children today go on treasure hunts, but I remember experiencing my own when I was a child. I remember my exciting anticipation when I went out searching for the treasures on my list, and then the thrill of finding a treasure, putting it in my bag, and going off looking for another one until my bag was as full as I could get it. Later, I had fun hiding treasures for my own children. I felt their joy with each successful discovery. A simple activity, but our hearts got a good workout.

So recapturing an attitude of gratitude doesn't have to be a chore. I can make it fun. Each morning I'll invite my inner child to join me on a treasure hunt to find things in my life for which I can be grateful. However, there's another step to forming this habit of gratitude. Every Thanksgiving my church hands out a booklet in which, for 40 days, we record 10 things each day for which we're grateful. (Yes, I would have formed the habit by now if I had done the work. But I didn't do it. So now I'll do it) There's power in commitment, but also power in what we think, and more in what we write down. So I'm covering all angles.

Each morning my child can re-experience the exciting anticipation of the hunt and then the thrill of finding a treasure. And we can both have a happy heart. Sounds like fun to me.

I wish everyone a happy hunt.


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