Gratitude: Another Take

Yesterday started out with a case of the Mondays.

I woke up feeling that something was not quite right.  I was jittery and couldn’t shake this sense of dread.  It lasted through the meeting with my boss, through my first job and into my part-time sales job.  I knew I had to do something – fast – to pull myself out of the funk or I would be useless.

I tried thinking of all the things I had going for me, all the things I And I was struggling to do that.  Just then, I got a text from my husband.  We were discussing grocery shopping and he said, “I just want to make it easy for you.”

That’s all I needed to hear.  I realized that all I needed at the moment was to know that I was not alone.  And then I thought – what if I’m not the only one who needs to hear this today?  I looked around the store (I was pouring samples and selling wine) and thought, can I help others?

As the saying goes, “If you see someone without a smile, give ‘em yours.”  So, I smiled and said hello to everyone who passed by my station.  I asked random strangers how they were doing (and got a few no’s, which always cracks me up – I mean, how can you be no?).  I gave sincere compliments and asked about their favorite teams displayed on their shirts.

So, did it work – did I help anyone?  Well, I had a man come up to me and tell me that he wanted to tell me he liked my smile (he didn’t drink).  I chatted with a woman who just needed to talk.  I asked about a man’s company (it was on his shirt) and got a recruiter contact.  I asked about another man’s day and made a contact for my full-time job.  And I sold some fairly expensive wine.

What struck me most was, while I was trying to take my mind off my troubles by focusing on others, it actually made me feel better.  I was making connections.  My day was flying, which is not always the case with these shifts.  I started to wonder if it was me.  I left the store that afternoon with a lightness in my step and a big smile on my face.  I felt refreshed and renewed.  And grateful.

Sometimes, gratitude isn’t about counting our blessings.  Sometimes, it’s reaching out to connect with others.  It’s reminding others they’re not alone and, in the process, we’re reminded that neither are we.

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