Gratitude FridayFeeling down? Try making a conscious effort to focus on gratitude. In research conducted by Dr. Robert Emmons and Dr. Michael McCullough (2003), participants who kept a gratitude journal reported feeling 25% happier than those who focused on the hassles in their lives. They were more optimistic about the future, felt better about their lives and even did almost 1.5 hours more exercise a week!

On this Gratitude Friday, why not reach out to someone you’re grateful for and let them know how they touch your life? Here’s what I’m particularly grateful for this week:

>> To be included in a celebration for my darling friend Yvette’s 50th birthday with a small group of ladies in New York City. She is truly a special friend, wife, mom and sister, and I don’t get to see her nearly often enough, so it was amazing to have the opportunity to spoil her for a whole day. Fun, foxy and fabulous at 50—what we all aspire to!

>> Overwhelmed that although it’s rare, it’s not entirely impossible to un-ring a bell. Joyful tears. So grateful.

>> I tend to be known as “The Rock” — the one everyone can count on to be strong and sensible in almost any circumstance. While I’m so flattered to be trusted by others who feel comfortable to be open and honest with me, I feel especially blessed to have a couple of confidantes with whom I can be open and honest, who listen and care when something is troubling me. The best solutions and ideas come from laying everything on the table, and I’m glad to have had the opportunity to let it all out—and have others let it all out to me—this past week.

>> Always awed and thankful to the fantastic team at Clarke School for Hearing and Speech in Northampton, Massachusetts, where Matt goes every three years for a comprehensive evaluation to help develop his mainstream educational plan. It’s still mindboggling to me that a kid with profound hearing loss can be mainstreamed so successfully, and the reports and insights from the Clarke team have been invaluable in that process. Looking forward to transition planning for high school later this spring.

>> My accountant, who gave us unexpected good news about taxes. Wait, can you actually use the words “good” and “taxes” in the same sentence?!

What’s on your gratitude list this week?

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