Hello Fellow Maverick,
Welcome to the first issue of the African Maverick Newsletter.
I want to thank you immensely for accompanying me on this journey. It promises to be a FUN and INSIGHTFUL one, so grab a seat…
What came to mind when you read the question posed in the title?
I have come to believe that a conscious decision to improve one’s self begins with adopting the attitude of Gratitude as a way of life.
However, this was not always my opinion. As a matter of fact, I never even considered this question until the day after this newsletter went live. Prior to this moment, self improvement to me meant reading a lot of books and striving to practice what I learnt from these books. But on this fateful day, my dad decided to give me some feedback after reading the introductory email and subscribing to the newsletter (THANKS DAD!).
Due to the nature and content of that conversation, I left feeling extremely grateful that I have a dad who is forever willing to offer advice. Also, I had a lot of questions running through my mind; one of which is the question in question (pun intended). The research that ensued, coupled with a little bias, led me to my current opinion.
So why Gratitude?
There are so many reasons why GRATITUDE is the way forward.
According to Robert Emmons, the world’s leading scientific expert on gratitude, ‘gratitude is important not only because it helps people feel good, but also because it inspires them to do good’.
Moreover, recent research studies show that gratitude can lead to many positive outcomes – psychological well-being, satisfaction with [life] and with other domains, pro-social relationships. It also improves focus on priorities and fulfillment of meaningful goals.
Mark T. Mitchell, professor of political science at Patrick Henry College in Virginia, aptly summaries these sentiments when he comments:
Now, I believe your curiosity has been piqued and you want to learn more about gratitude as an attitude. If this is true, read through these insightful articles:
The Four Gifts of Gratitude for Leaders by Mark Sanborn
Gratitude Leads to Success and Happiness
A Practical Guide to Gratitude
Is Gratitude the Path to a Better World? An interview with Brother David Steindl-Rast, Benedictine monk, author, and leading figure in the worldwide gratitude movement.
What Gets in the Way of Gratitude? by Robert Emmons
Is Gratitude Queen of the Virtues? by Robert Emmons
Need More Convincing?
Here are few more salient points:
- Grateful eyes look at whatever it be as if they had never seen it before and caress it as if they would never see it again. This is a most REALISTIC ATTITUDE, because every moment is indeed unique.
- Gratitude heals, energizes and transforms lives in a myriad of ways consistent with the notion that virtue is both its own reward and produces other rewards.
- Gratitude is the MORAL MEMORY of mankind.
- Gratitude is a higher-level moral emotion that enables people to notice, understand and capitalize on beneficial exchanges with others.
- Gratitude exercises help develop writing skills and may also motivate students to focus on their unique life stories and priorities, helping to forge their purpose.
- Gratitude is the MORAL GLUE of a functioning society.
- Genuine gratitude emerges when empathy matures.
- Do you want to be a grateful person? Then REMEMBER TO REMEMBER.
Quotes to live by
“A grateful mind is a great mind which eventually attracts to itself great things” – Plato
“Trade you expectations for gratitude and the world changes instantly” – Tony Robbins
Now’s you turn?
Despite this convincing case I have presented in favor of Gratitude, you probably still have and hold on to your different opinion. If so, please share what you think is the best way to begin a conscious journey toward self-improvement by replying to this email.
I will be very grateful to hear your take.
Take some time dream 😉
– A. Maverick
PS: The African Maverick is a monthly newsletter centered around personal development and self-improvement. If you know anyone who could benefit from such information, please share this with them.