Where I live, if you blink in mid-November, you’ll swear autumn lasted only five minutes! I guess that’s why folks here revere it and why I am compelled to capture autumn moments. In the few days since I snapped photos for the post, the landscape morphed into something wholly new. An overnight snowfall ushered in a serenely softer mood. Inspirational Gratitude Quotes & How to Savor Fleeting Autumn Vibes invites you to savor orange fallen leaves, to soak in golden beams of Thanksgiving as we inch closer to the holiday.
Inspirational Gratitude Quotes & How to Savor Fleeting Autumn Vibes
The Science of Gratitude
Brené Brown’s research reveals a significant relationship between joy and gratitude. The direction of the causality of joy surprised her, and this is so worth a watch!
Oh, sweet dappled sunlight through my autumn hillside trees! You’re more precious than diamonds!
And how can I ever say I can’t live with orange when I CAN and I DO!?!
Indeed it’s a privilege to live with these changing seasons.
With these birds of the air who feast on the berries just past my windows.
The Simplest Gratitude Practice
It has been some time since I kept a gratitude journal, and here’s a very simple gratitude practice we can adopt at each day’s end.
Simply write down one thing…the best part of the day…upon a calendar near the bed.
Just think what a blessing it will be at the end of the year to reflect back upon 365 glorious gifts!
It may be a small thing, but I am grateful that at this very moment, I can wiggle my toes without fear or wincing. For weeks on end, the threat of dystonia and ongoing neuropathic issues kept me locked out of such joy.
I’m thankful for a cozy kitchen in a warm home where I can work, create art, and share life with others.
And I’m thankful for nature’s comfort all around…
how often do I take it all for granted?
Distract myself with dreams of sandy beaches and ocean waves,
when there is majesty right here, at my doorstep.
I’m ever grateful for the trees surrounding our property which are home to wild creatures who are presently my only pets.
Almost every morning, I awaken to the sound of squirrels prancing on the rooftop.
From the windows, I watch them chase and feverishly bury black walnuts.
But my favorite is watching how my sweet babies–my busy squirrels–will sit very still in the spot where the branch meets the tree trunk near our bedroom window.
Once they are comfy in that secure nook of a crook, they may recline for up to an hour, nibbling away, contented, safe, and grateful…well, it looks like gratitude.
What a privilege to spend time with them as they remain still except for little jaws chewing!
To notice the beauty of their tiny paws and fluffy tails.
And what a mess is made with walnuts on the patio below!
I’m grateful for the mess too…it never fails to make me smile.
(Psst. The white milk glass candle below has been burning at our house this fall, it’s right here and hard to beat…)
Faded hydrangea blooms are another favorite of mine in fall…
I love how their petals cling even as so many oak and beech leaves fly free.
Oh, how I wish everyone could savor the serenity of a misty fall morning where frost has landed on pumpkins…
where the soft crunch of leaves underfoot brings back a flood of memories from autumns of childhood.
No matter what the season looks like for you, I wish you eyes to see that what you have is enough.
Eyes to see nature’s teaching all around.
(My squirrels seem to largely live in a perpetual state of scarcity! They hoard so many more nuts than they can ever consume. Yet how does the earth respond to the inequity? Graciously, intelligently, and with mercy.)
Be Still and Know
If you are in a season where it is hard to access a grateful heart, where a lens for gratitude eludes, please know you are not damaged, not broken, not cursed.
And you are certainly not powerless even though the evidence may point to the contrary.
It is possible that you have come to the end of your personal resources for seeing which can feel overwhelming and painful. You may feel stripped of your foliage, alone and without protection.
But at the end of your resources is a very alive spaciousness I would invite you to explore.
It may be time for you to sink your roots deeper. To draw nearer to the earth.
If your knees feel like falling, oh, friend, let them fall.
For there is beauty there which will hold you as you contact the ground.
There are hidden sources of goodness and nourishment deep in your roots. Life for your weary soul is hidden there even when the season turns.
If you remember nothing of this post, I hope you will remember this:
you are just one prayer, one moment, one breath away…from seeking the grace you need.
Whether it is strength, courage, patience, mercy, forgiveness, or gratitude that you need just now, you are but one breath from seeking the grace for it.
Do not fear that these virtues have dried up or departed for good, that you are locked out of the garden forever.
Be still and know that grace may be sought. That it will find you where you are.
How often do we allow fear to mobilize us to reach for coping mechanisms and self-transformation strategies? Mobilize us to do, buy, drink, consume, scroll, numb…do anything but become still and know.
Sometimes, it can help to build in daily rhythms to encourage stillness and quiet. A warm bath, for example.
I personally like the mornings for quiet, centering time to seek a new heart.
The Art of Gratitude
Surely the art of gratitude takes a lifetime of practice.
Now that half of mine has been spent, I can see all the ways I was blind to gifts that did not at all feel like gifts when they were given. As a result, I could not access gratitude for them.
“Gratitude is good for you. Taking a moment to give thanks can improve your digestion, mental health, and even your emotional health. It doesn’t just make things “feel” better, it actually makes them get better.” -Ocean Robbins
Well, if I am honest, I am still mostly blind to the gifts; always judging and weighing and dissecting the joy from the sorrow.
Which is why I must daily surrender and seek the grace to see beyond my own deeply rooted biases, privileges, entitlements and blind-spots. To see beyond the finite.
Beyond the glare of my wounds and trauma.
Even now, I write these words from a place of deep woundedness and persistent blindness.
Yet I believe even wounded healers can heal with touch. So I bring these gentle hands.
Take heart, lovely one. You’ve got a friend here with her face turned skyward, palms open, with an embodied prayer for you and yours.
It may be a simple act of surrender and hope from a blind beggar of a blogger, but simplicity seems to often unlock the key to the infinite.
A Life Devoted to Peace & Gratitude
Are You Still Reading?
Oh, my, these streams of consciousness seem to flow in directions I never see coming!
I have told you this many times…I don’t understand the mechanics of these energies swirling within as neurotransmitters transmit and even misfire. I don’t understand much of anything at all.
So I share it all quite humbly in a spirit of unknowing.
From a place of mysterious darkness as I cannot see you or know the realities your day will bring.
I am learning to trust this mystery and darkness.
As a seed trusts its weighted blanket of soil.
Or a newborn star trusts the cosmic dark-sky tender mother birthing it.
Learning to trust this darkness and stop resisting reality’s reality is the work of a lifetime.
What a gift that we are given so much help on this earth to keep learning and relearning it.
I wish you the blessings of darkness on your journey toward more free and courageous living.
But mostly I wish you Love with a capital L. Because it will hold during those times you sense the darkness may consume you.
It will hold.
Thank you for reading. I’m aware of the millions of websites and blogs in existence.
It’s a wonder to me that you choose to visit this one.
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Peace to you right where you are.
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