On Gratitude and US Airways
I’ve heard this to be true for years, but have only recently realize how powerful living a life rooted in gratitude can be. I’ve gone through a couple of major life transitions lately. The changes (I’ll spare you all of the details) have been driven by revisiting my top values and putting my life in closer alignment with them. I feel deeply that God has granted me my life and everything I have. God has guided me to find these values and to live a life driven by them. I have come to believe that God guides me through a deep love, and will help me be successful.
Many of my actions have put me in positions of vulnerability – negotiating business terms, risking that my income would drop, etc. I’ve approached these challenging situations with an attitude of looking for God to guide me. Over the last few weeks I’ve noticed that approaching any situation with an open heart, looking for good things, I’ve found them. It’s been big and little things, truly. But really, the little things are the ones that catch me off guard and help me stay in a place of gratitude and feelings of abundance. A contract came through immediately, the day I started my new agency. I pointed a woman to the front of the line at a coffee shop and she gave me a coupon for a free drink. I negotiated a business deal successfully, that really could have gone badly without being open, honest, and most importantly grateful.
I travel plenty for work. In fact, I am writing this post on a plane. I bought my ticket for this flight four days before a business trip and had no choice but to take a seat in the middle of the row. As I walked toward my seat I returned the smile of an older woman sitting on the aisle. Then – two rows back – climbed into the middle seat. I squeezed in between two large men with an infant screaming behind us. I knew I’d be wearing my headphones the whole flight.
A minute before we pushed back from the gate the woman walked back to my row and started talking in a language I’d never heard) to the man sitting next to me on the aisle. She looked at me and smiled slightly. “She would like to sit next to me. Would you mind moving to her aisle seat?” said the man (her son) sitting next to me. Would I? I gladly gave her my seat and moved up to the aisle seat.
After the plane took off I was working on my computer when the attendant came through and offered me a drink. I asked her for a club soda or seltzer or whatever was easy for her. After she gave me the club soda, I thanked her kindly. I still can’t believe what happened next. Two minutes later she came back to my row and said “I see your typing there and don’t have too much room. Would you like to move up to the aisle seat in the exit row?” Would I?? How amazing. I thanked her again and moved up to practically first class.
In the span of 30 minutes I went from sitting in the worst seat on the plane to the best.
And, I had one thing to thank.
I’m saying the following to me as much as to you: “Stop looking for life to kick you in the pants. Start looking for it to make you happy. And be grateful.”
Thank you smiling older lady. And, thank you, Marilyn, the flight attendant on US Airways Flight 946 from Denver to Philadelphia.