Trish McFarlane wrote a post over at HRRingleader a couple of weeks ago about gratitude. I loved that post. Not because she mentioned me, but because I know what a powerful force for good gratitude is.
And she got me thinking about my life and the gratitude I feel every day for the people in my life, the experiences I’ve had and the extraordinary life I’ve led. I’ve been afforded opportunities that a middle class kid who grew up in a small town in Michigan couldn’t even begin to imagine. My parents instilled in me the belief that I could do anything – but not even they could have conceived of the path my life would take.
My grandparents made it possible for me to attend an outstanding boarding school when the school system in my town was nearly broke and broken. I was able to excel at an equally outstanding small liberal arts college and made friends that last today. I met and married my soul mate who has provided love, support and more fun than should be legal for almost 30 years.
As my career unfolded it has afforded me the opportunity to lead teams of gifted professionals, to travel the world to support my organizations and to work alongside some pretty impressive intellects housed in some of the finest people I’ve ever met. I’ve served on the boards of several non-profit organizations that are making real differences in our world and I’ve been blessed by involvement in my faith community.
Most recently I’ve been filled with wonder and gratitude for the way my community of friends have been supporting my job search. It’s hard to make an executive transition these days. It’s easy to feel like a tiny sliver in a bad pie chart. The news is never positive about job growth and the messages from the press seem to target job seekers with ever more depressing reasons why we’ll never find our next situation – or if we do, how drastically under employed and unfulfilled we’ll be.
But you know what? My friends and professional network are incredible. They keep me focused on a positive outcome. They send me leads. They introduce me to their colleagues. They introduce me to executive search firms. And they give me encouragement.
And you know what else? I’ve never met some of these folks face to face. We’ve connected through social media – and I don’t just mean LinkedIn. We comment on each others’ blogs. We tweet. We email each other. And we talk to each other on the phone. And when they’re in town they call and we get together. Sometimes for the first time.
I know how powerful gratitude is. It can change your health. It can change your job. It can change your life. And I’m sitting here in my beautiful home office, with my sweet dog next to me and my amazing husband down the hall and I’m grateful. Grateful for all the good in my life. Grateful for all the good people in my life. Grateful for all the opportunities I’ve had and will continue to have to do good in my life and make a positive difference. And thinking that, even without a job, I’m amply employed. And unspeakably grateful.