I'm sure you've heard the expression, “Count your blessings.” I wonder how you interpret that. I wonder how you count them. I wonder how you take advantage of them.
My biggest wonder is how grateful are you for your blessings?
Here’s an idea: Re-look at your blessings from a different perspective. Are they blessings or are they assets? Are they blessings or are they attributes? Are they blessings or are they gifts you can share with others?
Good news: There are no right answers to those questions.
Better news: You have to determine the answers for yourself.
Best news: Once you determine what those blessings, or assets, or attributes, or gifts are, you can begin to build them, add to them, enjoy them and turn them into a happier, better you.
Here’s how to do it: Sit down at your laptop and write your eulogy. Write down what you would want your children or your significant other to say about your life — how you lived it, what you achieved in it and what your best qualities were. What kind of a person were you? What kind of a father or mother were you? What kind of a son or daughter were you? What kind of a friend were you?
Those are the questions that will reveal all of the assets, all of the attributes, and all of the gifts you have.
In my opinion, the one blessing or attribute that will define you better than any of the others is what you gave.
I don't mean how much money you gave away. Rather, I mean what you gave of yourself. Did you volunteer? Did you participate in a charity? Did you help your kids with their homework? Did you help an elderly person across the street? Were you a giver or a taker?
Giving defines your person.
Me? I give smiles. And I give them on purpose, every day.
I have a daily goal. Make 10 people smile every day.
That may not sound like much, but it’s amazing what happens when you can make someone you hardly know smile at you based on your interaction with them. It means that you have been kind, or humorous, or thought provoking — or just a good guy or gal.
Sometimes it involves a bigger tip than you might normally give. Sometimes it's just a matter of holding a door. Whatever it is, when you make someone smile, it changes their whole physiology. They walk away feeling better than they did because they encountered you.
My daily goal also includes one other element: performing a random act of kindness.
Random acts of kindness are easily defined as proactive politeness, proactive helping, or proactive giving. No one asked for anything. You just decided to get up and do it.
I wonder if you ever think about random acts of kindness. I wonder if you regularly perform random acts of kindness. I wonder if you understand who feels best after the random act of kindness has been performed.
If you perform them like I do, then you know who feels best: You do.
Oh, the recipient feels great because you helped them or honored them. But you feel greater. Random acts of kindness have a double win. And the feeling lasts a long time.
I challenge you to make 10 people smile and perform one random act of kindness a day. I challenge you to do it for the right reasons: for yourself.
When you make people smile, you smile. The power of that transfers immediately to all your other thoughts and you become happier. In fact, you look for ways to make other people smile because of the feeling that gives you.
And that’s a self-imposed blessing you can take to the grave.
Jeffrey Gitomer’s website, www.gitomer.com, has information about training and seminars, or email him personally at email@example.com.