Monday, November 23, 2009

A Thanksgiving resolution

Anybody remember the book Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnach? Subtitled A Daybook of Comfort and Joy, it's a book of daily readings designed to help you appreciate your life.

When the book was first published back in 1995, I joined a lot of people I know and read it daily. One of its recommendations is to keep a gratitude journal, listing every day five things you're thankful for. Focusing on what we have, rather than what we don't have, is a way of bringing contentment to our lives.

By nature I'm a bitcher, a whiner, a glass-half-empty kind of person. And I like it that way.

But then I look at my mother, a bitcher, and my mother-in-law, a whiner. They both drive me crazy. I don't want to drive people crazy. At least, not because I'm so annoying.

So, even though it's not the New Year yet, I'm making a resolution. No more bitching. No more whining. I'm going to cultivate an attitude of gratitude. When I really stop and think about it, my life is full of wonderful things--my family, my friends, my church family, my home, even my ten-year-old car, which runs great and gets terrific gas mileage.

My friends won't recognize me anymore. But maybe I'll find contentment.

How long do you think it'll be before I forget this Thanksgiving resolution and go back to bitching and whining? A month? A week? A day?

Five minutes?

I'm working on it.


  1. ticktickticktick
    *pops head up*
    Well, whadya know, eh.
    *wanders away, puzzled*

  2. Lol! Good luck with this. While I admire the idea, I think I would explode if I gave up all bitching and whining. It's a natural release and pefectly human if done in moderation.

    I think moderation is key. I had a friend who only used to be remotely negative. But as she got older and she felt things were going well for everyone BUT her, bitching, griping and making everyone misserable became her way of life. She could gripe about anything and everything. Every time I got off the phone with her, her bad attitude left me feeling... contaminated.

    So, yeah, I agree we should all try to find the positive in not so positive circumstances. But, you know, you lose your job. You can bitch about it. Not for six months, but initially. Your kid breaks your favorite coffee mug, it's okay to pretend like it's the end of the world. For five minutes. Especially if you're premenstrual.

    But I think it's healthy and human to whine and bitch occasionally.

    And I've 'known' you a while, Dee! You've never seemed bitchy or whiney to me. I think that's been my job! ;)


  3. I've never met a less bitchy whiner. Or a less whiney bitch.

    You just deal with the sucky hand of relatives you were dealt.
    And then beat the crap out of those playing you in lex.

    So, chin up, Dee Voted, if you're on the bottom, all you can do is go up. Er, or be stagnant on the bottom.
    Nevermind. Thanks for the Card. You googled my addy...


  4. Thanks, friends. With mildew coming in just a few days I'm prepared to bitch my brains out. It's such a struggle not to snap at her when she whines all the time. I'd rather be a bitcher than a whiner.

    I don't think there's much danger of me ever turning into a pollyanna type.

  5. Several years ago, I gave up the half-empty thing. It was hard but worth it. Sure, I still complain, whine, etc. too often, but not nearly as much as I did.

    My granny used to say, after three days, no matter how significant a thing is or was, no one wants to hear about it ever again. Really tough to live by (especially when it is/was a big deal to me), but she was right.

    Just my own ponderings.

    PS I didn't turn in to Pollyanna - my sister has dibs on that as a career, but that is fodder for a different blog.

  6. I'm already backsliding. What can I say? I like bitchy me, lol!