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Gratitude Between Us

David Sherry
3 min read

The holidays are not my best time, but only because I don't feel that I am at full power, with energy leaking to the change in the time zone, morning pattern and lack of physical movement.

I've meant to write you to add footnotes to the year, but I also have allowed the routine to slip. I don't beat myself up over these things...

I'm guided by my notes and podcasts, along with a series of breakfast and coffee conversations about plans for 2019.

At some point soon I will be sending you a link to my first book, "Lead Yourself" which is a series of essays that read like these emails and cover what was underlying much of my thinking from the past year. The majority was written in a roughly 10-day sprint, and then a 20-day editing space, and a 30-day organization period.

The book is a change from the traditional format.

As a book to me is instead about refinement of ideas, sharpened to potency and carried by a throughline.

Whereas I like to be in your inbox more conversationally, more exploratory, and it's a conversation where we generate our ideas together.

We never truly see each other.

During the holidays I find myself feeling immensely grateful for those in the service sector in every domain around me.

From the attendant at the gas station to the grocer, the movie popcorn assistant, and even those who sit behind the scenes, shipping our goods from all across the country.

No doubt each of these people has their own story, background, highs, lows, and I find myself picturing them at other moments in their life, not during the mundane tasks. Seeing the ring on the finger of the older woman pouring coffee with an image of a church and wedding bells ringing, or the gentleman steward on the airline instead tending to his grill or walking through the woods on a hike.

Each person I see is a moment of gratitude for what makes the lives of others easier. And so we can pay it forward to nod to that. I know money is exchanged, but it's exchanged for time, and for that I'm grateful.

This year I'm following anti-resolution.

It's not about seeing what I want to do.

It's seeing clearly what happens if I don't do.

It's seeing what I'm missing out on (what I'm capable of).

I'm finding more sense of energy, direction, and purpose from purely recognizing the painfully truthful fact that time is passing and I do not get any more of it once it's used up.

I picture time burning like a rope, and the moments that it's burning and fraying are moments I spend uninterested or unengaged.

When I'm present, the rope hangs still, frozen. And even though time still passes, I feel I used it well, that I didn't waste it, and I captured that moment.

I tried pulling up a photo from a year ago today, and instead, I found an old note from me to myself.

It had a statement on there that came true within 6 months of writing it.

And I again recognize that if we have a seriousness of commitment and a burning resolution for everything that we won't accept in our lives, we can reconfigure the world around us quite quickly.

It's not a lack of effort that delays us, it's a lack of desire.

And so the anti-resolution is a via negativa.

A recognition of all that is currently not.

And a truthful understanding of whether or not that is acceptable to me.

And if it's not... merely recognizing that is enough to plant the seed for growth that can take time to seep in.

But the moment it does...

The wind is at our backs.

Okay, I'm glad I got this to you. I'm going to leave it off here, I'm conscious and grateful of your time. See you again sometime in the next week, where we can pick up this conversation where we left off...

Grateful for the space between us.

xx David