Diana McCollum

Gratitude is an Attitude

by | Dec 19, 2023 | Blog

Photographer: Serebnina of Depost Photos

When I worked in an office, I often listened to talk radio host Dr. Laura and she used to say, “Gratitude is an Attitude”. When something goes wrong in my life I repeat those words to myself. It helps dispel the depressed feelings and set my keel on a different course. One can wallow in self-pity, but what’s the point?

Happiness is not found in the material objects we accumulate, money or our jobs, but rather in strong, healthy relationships , romantic and platonic. Women more than men seem to thrive best with a large circle of caring friends. I know my friends old and new mean the world to me. Even my electronic friends I’ve never met in person. It means a lot to share in their achievements, give kudos for a job well done, and support when they’re having a bad day.

I feel the joy of life comes from the small things. A cup of coffee with a friend at the local book store, my husband braiding me a leather hat band for my favorite old cowboy hat, seeing on the loop that a friend has published her first book, or another friend had a successful surgery!

Celebrate those small moments of Joy. Watch the sunset on a cold winter’s day and look at the beauty of it, don’t wish it wasn’t so cold.

When you live far away from family as I do, instead of being sad, Skype and write letters to the Grandkids.

My most cherished letter came from my granddaughter Sophia, 7 years old; it ends with her writing, “I’ll always love you, love, Sophia.” That letter has brought me more Joy than I can express. Every time I read it I get a tear in my eye and I feel happy and loved. The letter hangs on my bulletin board.

Can’t go on that big European vacation this year? Do a Stay-cation and enjoy sites close to home and be joyful you didn’t spend an arm and a leg to get there.

Tired of cooking the same old thing? Pull out a cookbook or go online to find a new recipe and be joyful you can afford to buy food.

My five joyful moments this past month are:

1) Receiving a Sponge Bob Square Pants thank you post card from my friend’s sons. This made me laugh and brought back memories of reading “Sponge Bob Square Pants” books to my grandkids.

2) ) My husband surprising me with that braided hat band. It took some work on his part, very special.

3) My grandson Erik texting me thanks for his birthday present and that he misses us. Made my day!

4) Attending a Christmas get together with my central Oregon writer friends at Paty’s house. Laughing and enjoying the company of those wonderful ladies!

5) Bringing Mom home from the hospital, so she would be home for Christmas. Very joyful indeed!

My promise to myself this year is to enjoy the small moments in life and hike on down the road to happiness!

After all, “Gratitude is an Attitude”.