“If I have seen further than others it is by standing on the shoulders of giants,” said Isaac Newton in 1675.
Even 300+ years ago ‘self-made’ was a myth.
We’re social creatures and no one can say we’ve got where we are today without any help or input from others.
Gratitude is a powerful emotion even if it isn’t a popular one.
Psychologist Shula Sommers asked participants which emotions they liked to experience and which they dreaded.
While gratitude generally ranked low in terms of desirability, for some men, experiencing gratitude was downright unpleasant, humiliating even!
Older men, in particular, found it hard to express gratitude openly, and over a third of American men reported preferring to keep feelings of gratitude to themselves.
This wasn’t the case with even a single woman.
None of us is fully self-sufficient, and we never will be. We rely on family, friends, communities and societies to live. We are what we are because of those who came before us.
Eastern philosophers have long spoken about interdependence, the idea that all things come into being through the mutual interactions of various causes and conditions.
If it weren’t for the sun, the trees, the air, the light, your parents, grandparents or great-grandparents (and so on) you wouldn’t be here today.
Denying this truth is deceiving yourself, and a formidable way to undercut your gratitude.
Even if you’ve made your own way in life, without the help of anyone or anything, you still depend on others for your continued success.
Unless your Bear Grylls-ing it out in the wild somewhere, scooping up bugs for protein as you go, and never come into contact with anyone else.
But even then, you weren’t conjured out of thin air and came from somewhere, and were cared for long enough to learn how to survive.
So, today I want you to pay homage to where you come from!
- Who has been the most influential person in your life?
- What about your childhood do you really appreciate?
- Complete this sentence: “without _________ I wouldn’t be here today.”