Last night, this 60+ foot tree came down in our backyard during a storm. Just hours before we’d had a tree company here taking down another 60+ foot tree that was dead and far too close to our house as we were afraid it would crash through our roof with the severe winds that are known to come through Kentucky (thank God for that perfect timing!!) So today our plans shifted so that we could cut, chop, prune, haul, stack and burn a LOT of branches, leaves and debris and stack a whole heck of a lot of wood for fall and winter bonfires.
I had mapped out my day to make products for a new wholesale account, edit a book, and prep for some consultation calls coming up this week. But all of that was out the window thanks to the storm. About halfway through the day, my muscles were screaming, I was hot, tired and frustrated and our kids who were helping were starting to grumble too. As is often the case, a change in perspective can shift the mood, so instead of focusing on how much I didn’t want to be moving 75 lb tree trunk pieces onto a dolly to wheel down our hill to stack at the back of our yard, I started speaking out loud the things I was grateful for:
- I have capable muscles and working limbs to allow me to help my husband and kids clean up the yard.
- The second tree had been cut down (though we still needed to move the pieces) less than two hours before the storm came through, and the timing for that was perfect. Had it come down in the storm, our beautiful new home would have had serious damage.
- The weather today was perfect – sunny but not humid as Kentucky usually is during the summer, with a slight breeze.
- A neighbor brought over a bigger chainsaw for my husband to use to make the work go faster.
- Another neighbor brought his chainsaw over and he and my husband made quick work of chopping the tree trunks into more reasonably sized pieces. His kids even came over and helped our kids pick up the smaller branches and leaves.
- We’re blessed to live in a new neighborhood where neighbors have become dear friends quite quickly and we all look out for and support each other however possible.
- I have a very stressful week coming up and the physical exertion felt good and helped relieve some stress.
- Tonight we’re having a get together at another neighbors’ house (this is a regular occurrence on our street) so I don’t need to cook!
The kids even got into the gratitude groove and made a game out of picking up the debris. The work was still backbreaking, but it went by much faster and we were laughing throughout the day. At the end, we stepped back and looked with pride over all of the work we’d accomplished today and shared our final gratitude – that we don’t have to deal with this wood any more this weekend – but next weekend when we get the log splitter, we’ll be right back at it, with a positive attitude this time!
We all have frustrating things happen in our business and personal lives, that derail our plans and can leave us grumbling and cranky. Next time this happens to you, take a moment to list just a few things that you’re grateful for in the moment and see how it can make a difference in your mood and approach to the situation.
What are you most grateful for today – how are you counting your blessings? Share in the comments below!