I pulled into my driveway and garage the other day at about 6:30 a.m. after a long, but satisfying day at work. The sky was just beginning to lighten and the deep purples were giving way to reds and then oranges with the coming of the sunrise in the east. After I had successfully parked my car, I went about the task of taking the trash to the curb. The air was cool, but there was not even the slightest hint of a breeze and so I walked casually down the driveway to accomplish my task. I adjusted the two ornamental butterflies on my front step so that they would catch the first light and then went in to the house to get ready for bed. I drank my customary glass of chocolate milk as I read a few chapters from the book that I am currently enjoying and then shut off the light and dozed into sweet slumber.
It was during my walk down the driveway and my luxurious morning routine that I kept saying to myself that I really am blessed. I really do have it made and I have so much to be thankful for. On a morning such as this, I have nothing to complain about.
There are, of course, other ways of looking at the same scenario. I suppose that I could complain that I had just spent a whole lot of hours at a physically demanding job and then I had to take out the trash when I got home because no one had done it for me. I could get upset that it was light out when I was endeavoring to get to sleep and that made this feat a little more difficult than usual. I also could whine about several things that have caused me angst in the past.
The point is, however, that if you are thankful for what you have and for what you are doing instead of being bitter about what you don't have and complaining about what you have to do, then your life will be all the better for it.
Each one of us makes a decision every time we begin our day whether we will be bitter or better for it.
Consider this story from the Reader's Digest: One morning I opened the door to get the newspaper and was surprised to see a strange little dog with our paper in his mouth. Delighted with this unexpected 'delivery service,' I fed him some treats. The following morning I was horrified to see the same dog sitting in front of our door, wagging his tail, surrounded by eight newspapers. I spent the rest of that morning returning the papers to their owners.
Although the man's neighbors probably did not appreciate it, the dog had the right idea. In order to be happy, you must first want to be happy and then actively do something to be happy.