Gratitude Letter Challenge

gratitudeletter

21 Day Gratitude Letter Challenge

Wow, we made it through the day! If your social media feeds were anything like mine, a broad spectrum of thoughts, raw emotions, declarations, and many opinions stemming from the election were represented. Today, I sat quietly on the other side of the screen, reading and liking comments here and there, and cheering on friends who offered positive suggestions for moving forward (regardless of their political stance.)

A few days ago, I wrote a post about the benefits of choosing gratitude over grumbling. I noted several positive benefits to a thankful attitude and mindset. I love the brain research on this topic and could write and discuss much more about it but I want to give you a way to put into action the information I wrote about.

I have heard it takes 21 days to form a habit. Although this may be a myth, I think 21 days is a good place to start moving forward with positive change. The recent election has put a lot of focus on the differences between people, thoughts, and ideas. I would like to challenge us to take the next 21 days to try something to help us switch the focus off of our differences and put them on our similarities. Something that will help us highlight the things we are grateful for in each other.

We are going old school, bringing back letter writing and snail mail. You will need, paper, a writing utensil, envelopes, and stamps. Each day, try to find about five to ten minutes to write. It does not have to be an uninterrupted time period. It could be a minute here and a minute there. You can write at a desk, the kitchen table, in the carpool lane, or in the bathroom. It does not have to be a letter filled with long, elaborate, flowing words and rhymed prose (although that would be totally awesome) but it does need to be genuine and point out one or two things you appreciate, admire, and like in the person. Seal up the letter, write the address, and drop it in the mail. And smile!

If you need a little help thinking about who to write, I created a document/picture (see above) with letter prompt ideas. This is just a suggestion, please write to whoever you like. Be creative. Use your church directory, address books, MOPS group directory, pull names out of a hat. Include your kids in this challenge. I believe these letters have the power to strengthen and change relationships.

Will you consider joining me in spreading some kindness and gratitude? I would love to hear from you if you do. And if you want to really take the challenge up a notch, hand deliver your letter and spend some time with that person. Oh, just think about that! What a way to make someone’s day brighter!

PS You can post on social media and follow along at hashtags #embraceletters, #embracegratitude


WONDER-FULL WEDNESDAY

wonderfullwednesday

Everyone needs a friend who encourages and gently prods-or pushes- them to try new and adventurous things. I have a friend who is like this. She is one of my best and dearest friends and one of the things that I love most about her is that she believes in me wholeheartily. So much so, that if she believes I can do something, I know that I can and usually execute it with much more confidence and grace than I thought possible!

So when my friend sent an email invitation to “a few dear friends who might be interested in spending a few days in the midst of God’s beautiful creation in the mountains,” I did not give it a second thought. My answer was an enthusiastic “YES!”

New Hampshire has 48 mountains over 4,000 feet and we plan to “bag” four of them. This is not a day hike. It will involve three days of hiking with three overnights all while carrying a 25+ pound pack on our backs. Three other, brave and adventurous friends will be joining the expedition.

I feel excited and a bit anxious all at the same time. I have a lot to do to be physically prepared for the trip. I am hopeful that this will kick my rear into gear and help me get back in shape. I also have some emotional preparation to do. The longest hike I have been on have been day trips and camping has involved being close to a bathhouse. Sleeping overnight miles into the woods, in a mountain hut, with strangers is stretching me big time. (Those who know me well will understand this.) There is a lot to learn especially about packs and equipment and I want to take it all in.

I plan to blog through the preparation in the weeks leading up to the trip, partly for accountability but also for reflection.  I will be posting my hiking  updates on “WONDER-FULL WEDNESDAYS.” Why not give it a name? The definition of the words are a perfect fit.  I hope that you will consider “joining” me  and cheering me on as I prepare to embark on a challenge that will stretch me physically, emotionally and spiritually. With wonder and enthusiasm, I can’t wait to find out what God has in store for me!


Wonder

  • desire or curiosity to know something.
  • a feeling of surprise mingled with admiration, caused by something beautiful, unexpected, unfamiliar, or inexplicable.

Full

  • possessing or containing a great amount

Wednesday

  • the day of the week between Tuesday and Thursday