Thanksgiving Message: Happiness Through Gratitude

Not happy? Start by counting your blessings. Learn more in this brief video.

Full Video Transcript:
Open doors to happiness and satisfaction through gratitude, satisfaction, and happiness. We’ve got a lot of things in
our material world here living in this country. We got a lot of stuff to be grateful for and we also have a lot in our culture telling us that you don’t have enough that you’re not enough. You don’t have enough. You need this designer outfit. You need this cologne, this
perfume.  You need a big office with a view of the other buildings. You need more, more, more, MORE.
You know, in some studies done in Buffalo they wanted to determine what was the effect of this “Count your blessings one by one” and they divided people into a couple groups and one group they stay asked them to complete the sentence, and I want you to complete the sentence, “I’m glad I’m not a “fill in the blank”. “I’m glad I’m not a…” What might that be? What are you glad you’re not?
A someone earlier said I’m glad I’m not a minister. Okay, like to hear more about that. I’m glad I’m not a troublesome person, someone
shared that one earlier. I’m glad I’m not dead, someone else shared that one. How might you fill in the blank for yourself? Try it! The people who completed that sentence five times, i’m glad i’m not a someone earlier said… a homeless person… i don’t know if the guys still out there…but someone was laying in the walkway here, looked like they slept there overnight. Wow! I’m glad I’m not a homeless person. That may sound negative to think about what you’re glad you’re not but what they discovered is people who completed that
sentence five times felt relatively more satisfied and happy with their lives.
Then they had the other group complete the sentence, “I wish I were a ‘now what’. Came to my mind, “..was a rich man yah de da de da de de de da de da de dum.” So I answered that question in my mind. I wish I were a and what I found was I felt a little more anxious after answering that question. I’m glad I’m not a…
You see this says the Dalai Lama in the reading pointed out when you think about other people who have more challenges and how many of you know there’s always somebody with more challenges than you have no matter how bad it is there’s always someone somewhere who’s got it even more challenging, you feel happy and grateful satisfied. More so, and that’s what the studies and gratitude of show, now we know that having a wish of who you want to be and what you want to experience and have and achieve in your life can be a wonderful source of joy, as long as it comes from within you and it’s not something you think you should be or something your parents expect you to be or ever do. Iit’s not some culturally put on you “goal or desire” but, if it comes from within your heart, it’s personal and it’s meaningful. That can be a source of joy. And it doesn’t even matter if you get it or not but that’s very different than thinking I am lacking because I’m not. I don’t have this or I don’t have that.
I think it’s a great reminder for us on Thanksgiving to be grateful for what I have. Can be a tremendous source of happiness and satisfaction in our life.
Many times in my life over the years I happen to notice a pattern that would happen whenever I was feeling a little down, maybe ungrateful, I would suddenly see someone with their family or others who are taking care of them, and maybe they had cerebral palsy, or maybe there was some other obvious challenge and they were smiling and laughing. And it would always remind me, “Let me be grateful. Let me remember what I have” and sometimes I wondered if some of these folks who have these… one of the reason may be there to remind us that you can be grateful, you can be happy, you can be beautiful no matter what challenges that we have in the world.
“You’ll have tribulation, but be a good cheer I have overcome the world.”