Tuesday, April 03, 2012

Another Rotary Invocation

I always try to deliver a non-religious invocation but which is none-the-less spiritual.  This time I spoke about keeping a gratitude journal.  I first learned about keeping a gratitude journal from a great book I found in the U.K. named: Help! by Oliver Burkeman, the author of The Guardian's "This Column Will Change Your Life" column.

My research dug up lots more about gratitude journals...among then a few gems from a University of Miami professor, an article from Oprah's website and an article from Wikipedia including a quote from a 14th century Dominican priest I used to wrap it up.

Here is the invocation:
I’m not a psychiatrist, but I believe that at the core of many (if not all people) is a nervous, selfish, worried little child who is afraid he or she will lose their stuff or that some other kid will have more stuff or that some act of fate will take their stuff away and they will be left with less stuff or worse: no stuff at all. These fears turn us into greedy, envious, anxious adults with less capacity for hope or love or charity.

So I’ve discovered a happy trick you can play on that child. Record your blessings in a gratitude journal – write them down like in a diary. Charles Dickens wrote: “Every day reflect on your present blessings, of which every man has many, not on your past misfortunes, of which all men have some.” Gratitude is one of the sweet shortcuts to finding peace of mind and happiness inside. Recording five a day keeps depression away.

So my advice it to keep a gratitude journal. Keep foremost in your thoughts that which you are thankful for, grateful for and in love with. Tell the little kid inside you to scram.

A 14th Century Dominican priest once said: “If the only prayer you said in your whole life was, ‘thank you,’ that would be enough.” 
You can Google “Gratitude Journal” for more.