Gratitude Countdown to a New Year

It’s officially the 2nd week of December and within just 23 more days it will be a New Year. No amount of begging, pleading, wishing, hoping, marketing, sales or leadership can change the direction we are all headed. 2018 is ending and 2019 is on it’s way.
Some of the next 23 days will be filled with family fun…and maybe a little dreaded family drama. Some of those days will bring a moment of regret for hopes not realized this year or moments of hope for dreams of what’s to come in 2019.

It’s also that time of year for making lists, checking them twice and still forgetting some of the most important work of our lives. This is the part that always gets me. Worry about forgetting something or someone. Stress about whether I’ve done everything that needs to be done. Questioning and doubting if I’ve done enough to let the people in my life know just how much I care about them all year, not just at the holidays.
As I was thinking about all of this, I felt my heart beating a little faster and my body feeling a little warm, even though it’s cool. I felt anxiety creeping up on me – again. I suddenly felt the urge to jump up and do something…anything to calm my fear that I’m not doing enough, that I’m not enough.

Then I remembered something that helped me when I battled insomnia a few years ago. After I had tried all the typical things (a regular bedtime, quite, dark room, removing all the clutter from my bedroom – even the storage under the bed, no caffeine after 3 pm, light meal at dinner, not looking in a lighted screen like a computer, phone or television 30 minutes before bed), I was still tossing and turning instead of all the things that had gone wrong or could have gone better if only I’d….

Since I had that 30 minute window without electronic devices, I tried a few things. Meditation and reading didn’t quite work all the time. So I decided to write. I wrote down something or someone that impressed me that day. I ended up focusing on the things I was grateful for that day. It worked. It refocused my mind on the positive and that was calming enough to allow me to fall asleep.

So as I count down 2018, instead of stressing about all that could have been this year, each day I’ll focus on one thing that happened in 2018 that I am grateful for.

Follow my Grateful Today posts on my Facebook Page @DebbieDLive.

Today, I’m grateful for the people who create the fabulous technology that allows us to communicate so freely with each other.

Build the business and life you crave!
Debbie Donaldson

 

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The Grateful Tree: episode two

Happy New Year!

January 1st is one of my favorite days of the year. And this year I’m even more excited than usual. Each year I’ve observed people making plans for a better year ahead. Some even looking back at the previous year or years. Some people feel a sense of regret or remorse for things in the past. However, like me, many are filled with hope and resolutions for better health, greater wealth and loving, lasting relationships in the new year.

Before we get to why I’m excited this year though, you may be wondering who I am and why you should pay any attention. After all, I’m just a tree that shades a small playground in a corner of a park in the desert, right?

Well that is what I call an incomplete truth.

That description of me would be like saying you are a human being that works at a company in a community. And we both know there is so much more to you than your species, job and location.

Here is a little more about me and my unique view of the world.

I was planted here as a sapling just 20 years ago. I came from seeds of greatness and have what some consider an old soul. When I look back, there are centuries of my ancestor’s experiences and wisdom in my roots. When I look out and ahead I am situated at a vantage point to see a small community of people and observe their struggles and accomplishments up close. Young children play just under my branches with their parents close by. Older children and adults play on the basketball & tennis courts in the park. There are even swimming pools, baseball and soccer fields within steps from my shade. Now here’s the fun part for me. Not one of my ancestors had this advantage. I am tall enough to see a city that attracts more than 3 million people each year from all over the world. At the same time, my roots have grown into the lot of a church next door. So, my roots are grounded in faith while my tallest branches observe the world in a place nick-named Sin City. This unique position provides the experiences, wisdom and vision I’ll be sharing with you.

There are families who have grown up in my park and nearby church. The lessons I’ve watched them learn over the years will now be yours as I share their life experiences. Brace yourself, these are not fairy tales. Their lives are filled with beauty and wonder just like my branches as they blossom and fill with tender spring leaves that become a rich, deep green in the summer. However, like the ground beneath my branches in the fall as my leaves litter the park, the lives of those I shade from the sun are sometimes messy. And very much like the barren branches in the picture you see of me today, their lives at times seem bleak with nothing to shield them from the cold, cruel world around them.

Then there are those energetic world-traveling visitors I can see in the distance. They come to celebrate, escape and forget the messiness of their lives back home. I’ll be sharing some of their antics with you as well. It’s a way for me to capture a bit of their excitement for myself. Of course, things aren’t always perfect with the visitors. They come to play, yet end up being played on occasion. Those lessons are hard, but worth knowing.

So why am I so excited and extremely grateful this year more than any other?

You.

Yes, you are the reason I’m excited this year. I can’t change what is happening or what happened to the people around me. However, I can give you an advantage with a few insights for a better life as I share their lessons with you.

This self-assigned, expanded purpose is enough to keep me grounded and reaching for the stars all year.

As a human, you have the power to assign yourself a greater purpose in life than the one you believed you inherited. Consider a purpose that honors your roots, broadens your capabilities and empowers those around you.

Cheers to the New Year!
The Grateful Tree

The Grateful Tree: episode one

December 29, 2017

As 2017 comes to an end there is so much to be grateful for, in spite of all the traumatic, devastating events that have shaken the entire world this year.

It’s hard to believe how much of the world I experience right here on my little patch of earth. You’ll learn why as my story unfolds.

Today I stand here naked and grateful, soaking up the sun’s glorious rays as I tell you a little about how I came to be.

About 20 years ago I was planted on this spot to oversee a playground in the desert. The summer sun is scorching here. The metal playground equipment below could be torture to little hands if not protected from the direct sunlight. The owners of the land and playground planted me with confidence I would do a good job. Year after year I have reached for the sky, stretched to grow and stayed strong even when my beautiful spring leaves shriveled and fell from my branches one by one each winter.

It took a few seasons for me to get used to the constant changes as I grew each year. Now I’ve reached the height where I feel confident I’m making a difference. I’ve observed over the years that those who have a purpose seem to have greater confidence in themselves and their abilities to make a difference. It also seems to help them weather the changes and unexpected events that occur in their lives.

Today I am grateful for the sun’s warmth and the laughter I hear in the playground on this mild winter day in the desert. I will need the heat to get me through the harsh winter night ahead.

I’m looking forward to sharing more of my story and observations with you in the coming year.

Sincerely,
The Grateful Tree

Hi Ho, Hi Ho

I can almost hear him whistling the tune “Hi Ho, Hi Ho, it’s off to work we go,” when Matt Gilkeson captured this beautiful sunrise on his way to work in Alabama.

Since I don’t personally know Matt, I found myself wondering what he was doing for work in Alabama. Then I wondered what everyone who sees this does for work…and if they noticed the Sunrise on their way.

Then I wondered if others feel as happy-go-lucky as I imaged Matt felt when he took this photo. I certainly do this morning.

Whistle while you work…….,

Debbie Donaldson, Champion for Good

P.S. Would love to share the sunrise you saw this morning on your way to work. Send it to contact@Superpowers365.com or PM me on Facebook, we’ll mention you in the photo and let you know when it posts.

 

I’m with you

When I received this sunrise photo today, it took me by surprise.  I woke up thinking about how obsessed I’ve become with sunrises. My friends from all over the country are sending these beautiful, inspiring photos that remind me of the one thing we all have in common no matter where we are, what we’re doing, how our lives are going, the sun will always rise.

Today I’m going to have a blood test for a surgery scheduled next week.

The surgery is breast reconstruction. Two years ago this month (breast cancer awareness month) I found out I had breast cancer. My body rejected the expanders after the bi-lateral mastectomy two years ago.

I am just now ready to brave the reconstruction again. As surgery day get’s closer, I get a little more anxious every day.  Several times I’ve even considered cancelling everything. This morning I woke up even more anxious.

Then my friend sent me this photo. She didn’t even know about the surgery or my fears.

They say a picture is worth a thousand words. Well, the message I got loud and clear is “I’m Here For You – It’s Time.”

Thank you Susan Moore for capturing this incredible sunrise. And thank you Marsha Lewis for sending it to me with Susan’s permission.

Somehow through the many years of our long distance friendship my high-school friend Marsha has instinctively known how to hold my hand when I needed it most.

Blessings,

Debbie Donaldson, Champion For Good

 

P.S. Have a sunrise to share? Send it to contacts@superpowers365.com.

 

Peace

A feeling of peace washed over me as I gazed at this Gulf Shores, Alabama sunrise sent by my friend Brent Eskew.

It has been a while since I’ve seen him and am thrilled he is participating in sharing a daily sunrise on Superpowers365.com.

Brent served in the military for several years right out of high-school. I’m not sure I ever thanked him for his service, so I’m doing that now.

Take a moment today to thank the men and women who serve our country so that we may enjoy the Peace that comes with the freedoms they protect.

Peace be with you,

Debbie Donaldson
Champion for Good

P.S. Want to join the fun? Email a photo and description we can share to contact@superpowers365.com.

 

Making a difference

Check out the Somos Live! Benefit concert October 14, 2017. The sold-out concert will air on NBC, BET and other stations in support of hurricane relief efforts for the people of Puerto Rico.

When we work together, we make a difference.

Sunrise in Rincon, Puerto Rico
Sunrise Believe

Nothing in my life compares to the devastation people of Puerto Rico are experiencing in the aftermath of hurricane Maria this year.

This beautiful photograph was taken by Cipriana Williams just seven months before the hurricane destroyed the entire island. The sunrise is likely still just as glorious every day there. However, if the camera were turned in the other direction, we would see a dramatically different view.

“What happened in Texas and Florida were disasters,” said W. Craig Fugate, who was FEMA administrator under President Barack Obama. “What happened in Puerto Rico was a catastrophe.” Read more in this NY Times article.

There are many people doing incredible good to help the people of Puerto Rico. Here are just a few. Click on their names to learn more…

Believe,

Debbie Donaldson
Champion for Good

P.S. Do you have a beautiful sunrise photo you’d like to share? Do you or someone you know have a sunrise photo from Australia or Africa?

Share your photo with us and we’ll let you know when it’s published.
Follow Superpowers365.com to enjoy a new sunrise every day.

Believe

 


Check out the Somos Live! Benefit concert October 14, 2017. The sold-out concert will air on NBC, BET and other stations in support of hurricane relief efforts for the people of Puerto Rico.

When we work together, we make a difference.

Sunrise in Rincon, Puerto Rico
Sunrise Believe

Nothing in my life compares to the devastation people of Puerto Rico are experiencing in the aftermath of hurricane Maria this year.

This beautiful photograph was taken by Cipriana Williams just seven months before the hurricane destroyed the entire island. The sunrise is likely still just as glorious every day there. However, if the camera were turned in the other direction, we would see a dramatically different view.

“What happened in Texas and Florida were disasters,” said W. Craig Fugate, who was FEMA administrator under President Barack Obama. “What happened in Puerto Rico was a catastrophe.” Read more in this NY Times article.

There are many people doing incredible good to help the people of Puerto Rico. Here are just a few. Click on their names to learn more…

Believe,

Debbie Donaldson
Champion for Good

P.S. Do you have a beautiful sunrise photo you’d like to share? Do you or someone you know have a sunrise photo from Australia or Africa?

Share your photo with us and we’ll let you know when it’s published.
Follow Superpowers365.com to enjoy a new sunrise every day.

I believe in Magic

My good friend Tammy Holyfield travels the country helping professionals reach their personal and professional goals.

When I opened this beautiful photo she sent me, I was in awe and am fascinated by the magic of every sunrise.

Sunrise Carolina Beach, NC
Sunrise: I believe in Magic

The sun rises and I am very grateful for that new, fresh start opportunity every day.

The sun rising is also an event experienced by everyone on the planet, even when we aren’t paying attention. I only seem to experience the beauty of the sun rising occasionally, so I decided to change that.

I’m gathering photos of sunrises from friends around the world. If you’d like to experience this magic, follow Superpowers365.com. I’ll share a new sunrise photo every day.

My goal is 365 different sunrise photos. I’ve received enough for 25 days so far.

If you’d like to send me one, you will receive photo credit and I’ll let you know when it is published.

Click here to send me a photo you’d like to share.

Cheers to a magical day,

Debbie Donaldson
Champion for Good

Superpower Today – GRATITUDE

Gratitude is one of the most shareable Superpowers you can activate today. Here are three ways to find yours and pass it on…

1. Identify one thing you are Grateful for today.

Yes, just one will do it.

Today I’m personally grateful that I can count on the sun to rise and inspire life no  matter what is going on the world.

2. Identify one person in your life you are Grateful for today.

Yup, just one will do it today.

I am very fortunate and grateful for this wonderful person in my life who loves to make me laugh.

3. Tell the person today why you are Grateful.

Tell them. Don’t keep it to yourself.  Do they have a special talent, skill, gift that you admire or appreciate?

Since I don’t recall ever telling that special person I am so very grateful for his desire to and ability for making me laugh, today’s the day!

Imagine activating this Superpower as a habit every day.

Gratefully yours,

Debbie Donaldson
Champion for Good