Day 1,056 – Thankful for a Reminder of the Secret to Happiness Courtesy of Mick Jagger at 5:30am

When my first alarm went off this morning I must’ve shut it off without waking up completely.  The second buzz on my wrist two minutes later was enough to wake me a bit, but only enough for me to grumble as I shut it off.  Thank goodness for the third that went off five minutes later as that one finally stuck and I got out of bed.  I felt bones and joints creak as I rose and walked to the door to let the dogs outside.  Walking back through the house I felt all kinds of stiff and slowly started limbering up as I got dressed.  A couple of minutes later my contacts were in my eyes, the leashes were in my hand, and the girls and I were off for a walk to start our day.

A few steps in I decided that a walk seemed like the best course of action as opposed to running.  I’ve been frustrated with myself lately in how I’ve gone from running a half marathon a few months ago to feeling completely out of shape.  While walking I kept wanting to run but I really knew I should focus on walking.  For some reason a song started to play in my head…

No, you can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
You can’t always get what you want
But if you try sometime you find
You get what you need

As I started singing it to myself while walking with the girls a smile broke across my face.  Thanks to a little Rolling Stones I was reminded of one of the most important keys to happiness; happiness isn’t about having what you want, it’s about wanting what you have.  True happiness comes in be thankful for and appreciating what I have. 

As that thought crossed my mind I paused, took a deep breath and reset my attitude.  I stopped getting frustrated about being in less than great shape and was thankful for the opportunity to push myself, practice grit, and live lessons I’ve learned in the past.  I was suddenly thankful for having the drive to get out of bed in the morning, the wonderful weather that made this so much easier, and the company of the girls.  Instead of missing Becky and wishing she was walking with me I focused on how cool it was that she would be hiking in Colorado later in the afternoon and was excited to see pictures and hear about what she saw.  I was thankful for the silence of the morning, the crispness of the air, and the slowly lightening sky.  There was a spot right out of a fairytale where the trees opened in a clearing that was filled with fog and lit up by the moonlight.  I was grateful for the ability to be outside starting my day in nature instead of laying under the covers. 

With gratitude as my guide I walked faster and a little further than I’d expected to and it felt great.  My morning (and the rest of my day) continued to get better as I kept repeating both the song and quote about happiness.  It’s funny that even though I’ve blogged about gratitude literally every day for almost 1,500 days I still need to be reminded of the joy produced from a mindset of gratitude.  Maybe in another 1,500 days it will almost start to become an initial reflex to any situation. 


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