I’m doubling down and committed to bringing Gratitude to the world in 2024. The world needs it; it’s healing and transformational. A summary of some of the gratitude stories collected in 2023 is below.
Personally, I am over the moon as my role as grandma expanded to two grandsons. They teach me so much, and playing with them is fun. I took a bucket list trip to the Southwest for almost a month with my husband, hiking and exploring nature. We call it the Sun City (Phoenix) to Sin City (Vegas) Tour, with stops at the Grand Canyon, Zion, Antelope Canyon, Sedona, and more. My sister and I took a week+ river cruise on the Rhine River in Europe; it was educational, moving, and lots of wine! I’m committed to work/life balance, a skill I learned over many years of working too hard.
Professionally, with the help of an amazing team, I published lots of blog posts and newsletters, interviewed over ten grateful leaders, and delivered 12 leadership book reviews via my new 2023 GEMS monthly services, which will continue in 2024, all while delivering quality coaching, workshops, and talks. I love shiny objects and have been struggling to learn to be more disciplined in 2023.
I am inspired by the grateful leaders I interviewed and will continue to publish more interviews in 2024. I am in the final draft of my next book on Gratitude and hoping to publish it mid-year. It will address the dark side of Gratitude and the challenges and offer practical solutions. While mainly focused on leaders, the stories and many of techniques apply to all gratitude practitioners.
Below is a summary of the gratitude lessons, stories, and interviews, and from 2023.
Gratitude Leaders and Their Stories
Gratitude master and expert wins the championship in only three seasons. Ted Lasso is the only fictional character I write about this year; the rest are real leaders doing real work. Ted exemplifies gratitude and uses it to create a positive team culture. Every situation has a bright side; he teaches the team to “believe,” “think like a goldfish,” and “that you are not alone.” For more on Ted: Grateful Leader and Master: Ted Lasso – Star Leadership
Suzan finds gratitude, and it turns her life around. “Gratitude can be active or passive,” she tells us. Gratitude is finding things you can celebrate, some you have no control over, like traffic and weather, and some you are actively turning around to find the positive. Making positive and active choices, like remembering to wear rain gear. Evil Marketer Learns Gratitude – Star Leadership
Wendy walks her talk and has a title to prove it—her job is to infuse gratitude into the business culture as a Chief of Culture and Community at Better Manager. She taught us to appreciate the person, not just the tasks they do. Wendy Walks Her Talk – Star Leadership
Gratitude builds value and is inclusive, Craig said. “Real gratitude is about action; words alone can be hollow,” Craig says gratitude is taking action that wasn’t asked for. Gratitude deepens with trust and respect, and the reverse is true. Expressing gratitude deepens trust. Please pay it forward and always be willing to do the right thing. You don’t know when it will come back to you; it did come back to Craig unexpectedly. Gratitude: Do It – Interview with Senior Manager – Star Leadership
Don is committed to gratitude. Gratitude saves lives and prevents accidents. He defines safety as designing ways to stop people from being hurt or killed. He’s committed to that because he cares about people. He says you must be willing to say the hard stuff to be practical as a safety leader. Don is a gun manufacturing company’s ex-VP and is now a consultant. Gratitude Evangelist, Senior Consultant, and Ex-Executive Gun Manufacturer – Star Leadership
Gratitude is not all sunshine and roses. The dark side of gratitude has many challenges, one key being fake gratitude. Forcing gratitude and using gratitude to manipulate and cope with reality are all types of fake gratitude. Gratitude Challenge: Fake Gratitude – Star Leadership
We started the year with three posts on time management; the first is here: Stop Making Goals; First Read This! Time Management/Part 1 – Star Leadership
There was also a post by some who considered a new and radical statement: The stronger my gratitude, the more self-aware I become, and vice versa.Gratitude and self-awareness build on each other. It’s nuanced and personal. The more you know about yourself, the more you can give good gratitude beyond a generic thank you because you get more specific in appreciating others and yourself. Gratitude Challenge: Self-Awareness Builds, Sometimes Change is Required – Star Leadership
I introduced the Five W’s of Leadership to follow up and help you clarify who you are as a leader. Your Leadership Framework: Five W’s – Star Leadership Every leader is unique, and the more a leader is clear on who they are, the easier it is for them to operate in times of uncertainty and massive change.
Being curious, I wondered what and how you practice gratitude. You answered here by sharing some of your practices: Gratitude Challenge: Must Practice – Star Leadership.
Thank you to everyone who shared their beliefs and gratitude stories with me. I am overwhelmed in gratitude—more stories to come in 2024 (in the form of a new book!) I wish you and yours a peaceful and wonderful 2024. Let me know how your year has been!