The Energizer

Resilient Insights for Work & Life

The Grace of Gratitude - A Key to Resiliency

by Eileen McDargh, Chief Energy Officer - Monday, November 21, 2016
Featured Image

Grace has been defined as a “gift of God, freely given”.  People with grace evoke a sense of calm with fluid movements and unpretentious presence.  And grace-filled moments rise when a convergence of unexpected events and people evoke a sense of wonder and joy.

So how does this combine with gratitude to impact resiliency? Glad you asked.

Expressions of appreciation and gratitude can never be demanded. Because of that, we are delighted and often surprised when someone notices our actions and says “thank you.” We are no longer taken for granted but instead, acknowledged for the contribution we made.We smile. We expand. We feel stronger. In fact, according to the latest research in the journal Personal Relationships, spousal gratitude is found to be the best predicator of marital quality and seems to have protective effects against marital conflict.The marriage itself becomes resilient.

When we are in the presence of people whom we acquaint with grace, their calm demeanor has a spillover effect. Our anxiety can lessen. Our respiration slows. We become more attuned to the NOW and not a worrisome future. Years ago, I had the amazing opportunity to sit on the ground at a remote monastery in the village of Nako in the Indian Himalayas. Under a parachute silk tent, we joined villagers who had come from parts of this remote region to this once-in-a-lifetime event. In front of me was the His Holiness, the Dalai Lama. He spoke in Tibetan to the villagers and monks gathered before him. Although I understood not a word, his presence softly covered all in compassion, kindness, and serenity.

That was an unexpected grace-filled moment that brought me to wonder, joy and deep gratitude for the experience. If the Dalai Lama who has lived through tremendous conflict, been driven from his country, and hunted with a price on his head could exude such resiliency and peace, could I not try and find similar calm and compassion in my life?

However, we don’t have to trek to India for gratitude. It can become a practice we can cultivate immediately. It takes awareness. Resiliency requires optimism and when we take time to notice all that we have, it has an immediate impact on our health, personal and relational well-being and human development.  In fact, the Greater Good Science Center at UC Berkeley has undertaken a $5.6 million project called “Expanding the Science and Practice of Gratitude” to deepen the scientific understand of the “gratitude effect”.

Gratitude starts now. Spoken out loud or captured in a journal, begin. Some days, it might be gratitude for the laughter of a child or the lick of a beloved dog.

And as we enter the Thanksgiving season, I am most grateful to you, my readers. I am thankful for my wonderful family, my great assistant, my superb web master and my wonderful friends.  I have treasured clients, amazing audiences, and a strong body to travel wherever they need me.  I am utterly, totally thankful for the gift of caring for and being with my mother in the last six years of her life. How thankful that my precious sister and brother joined me in that journey.

As Meister Eckhart wrote centuries ago, “If the only prayer you ever said was thank you, that would be enough."



Share This Post

Like this post? Please share it!


< Back to All Posts

Comments



Eileen McDargh Keynote Speaker Blog Author

About Eileen!

Since beginning her consulting and training practice in 1980, Eileen has become noted for her ability to speak the truth with clarity, wisdom, humor and compassion. Long-standing clients and repeat engagements attest to her commitment to make a difference in minds, hearts and spirits of organizations and individuals. She draws upon practical business know-how, life's experiences and years of consulting to major national and international organizations that have ranged from global pharmaceuticals to the US Armed Forces, from health care associations to religious institutions. Executive Excellence magazine selected her as one of the top 100 thought leaders in leadership and among the top ten consultant providers of leadership development.

View all posts by Eileen


Subscribe to My Blog!


Like My Blog?

Please share it!

Recents Posts


Categories



Archive


Tags

Speaking Honoring Veterans Your Resiliency GPS Adventure Superbowl Writing Multi-tasking Interview women in leadership Depression Yoga Career Advice Branding teams Loss resilient leaders Spirit Empathy Gifts From The Mountain Animals Bill Treasurer Soft Skills Intentions USAA Nursing Road Trip conscience The Last Jedi angels Christmas Kindness Education resiliency goals Charity Feedback Sleeping Breath Technology Mother's Day Memorial Day John Blumberg Change civil discourse New Year resolutions Happiness gratitude preresilience Leaders Open Doors Book Walk For Hunger U.S.A.A. Humor Meetings stuck Survive Talk Ain't Cheap Book holidays Book Reviews servant leadership ecology Spelling Bee Marriage Employee Attitude Motivating Others Postive Work Environment Positive Brain Repatterning Ownership Divorce WASP Guns employee retention coaching Corporate Culture Communication Burnout Climate Change Arlington Cemetary Listening Napping resilient organizations Breathe Leadership Skills Jewish Labor Day Humanity love Office Celebrations Strangers Adaptability Tornadoes in Texas Sexual Harassment Aging Play waiting Patriots Voting Sheryl Sandberg Energizing John Havlik Art Seder Eve Disruption Fun Work Environment Idea Networking St. Patrick's Day Laughter Alzheimer's Children resilience Content Generation Sustainability customer service Dogs e-mail Siblings Optimism Learned Optimism Emotional Intelligence Option B Ecotourism Relationships Hurricane Harvey Sales Engaged Workers Stress Politics employees Twas The Night Before Christmas Travel Diversity Disrupt creativity Henry VIII More Fun at Work Girls earthquakes Hurricane Irma Social Media Environtment Boston Marathon Vacation Married Energizing Others Faith Building Resilience Trust Bullying Adam Grant Radical Resiliency Suddenly Single Deloitte Thanksgiving Exercise Persuasion work life balance Reshaping the Brain Volunteer Human Interaction Women Family Energy cancer LGBTQ Mark Scharenbroich Back To School