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Publication: Fifty & Furthermore
Wisdom, Spirituality and Gratitude

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FIFTY & FURTHERMORE - Thursday, December 7, 2006

"I'm Dr. Dorree Lynn, founder of FiftyandFurthermore.com. 
Growing older can be a time for creative and passionate 
living, and I will apply my years as a psychologist to 
help you with the challenges and wonders that come with 
this new life stage."

------------------------------------------------------------

Hello and welcome to FIFTY & FURTHERMORE! 

Today readers share their own wisdom surrounding gratitude 
and spirituality. If you would like to make a comment or 
ask me a question, please email me at the address below 
and as always, I will do all I can to provide you with 
the advice you seek.

As I always say, "life is too hard to do alone - reach 
out!"

Dr. Dorree Lynn, Psychologist


Please send questions and comments to: 
email Dr. Lynn

Question:

What a wonderful  attitude that woman has! We could all 
adopt it.

In my job, I quite often have people interrupting me to 
say they forgot to do something that impacts on me or 
the photocopying is throwing a hissy fit, could I take 
a look at it, the usual office things. I usually tell 
them, “If that’s the worst thing that happens to me 
today, it’s going to be a good one.” And I mean it! I 
When you think about it, if that petty annoyance (even 
though it annoys the heck out of you at the time) is 
the worst thing in your day, you have it pretty good. 
When I think of the major upheavals in my life, fatal 
illness of a family member, fatal accidents involving 
young people, bankruptcy and suicides – what’s 10 
minutes fixing the photocopier! 

And I like to think that my saying that impacts on their 
day also – that perhaps when something annoys them, they 
will be able to adopt the same attitude.

Answer:

What a wonderful attitude you have as well. It is true 
that we often become hung up on the daily nuances but 
forget to look at them in the big picture of our lives. 
I hope others will indeed adopt your attitude, 
especially around the upcoming holidays. Thanks for 
writing in.

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Question:

Recently I came up with an idea to recall those events 
and things in life for which I am grateful.  I made 
myself a gratitude jar.
 
I took a large glass jar I found at a garage sale and 
pasted the words "Gratitude Jar-Today I am thankful for..."
created from the TextArt of Word Perfect.  At the end of 
each day, I take a few minutes and reflect as to how the 
day went, write down on a piece of paper the date and what 
I was thankful for, then put it into the jar.  At the end 
of a week, I reread what I wrote, transfer what I wrote 
to a large notebook, and dispose of the slips of paper.  
The following week, I start all over again.
 
Thinking the family could benefit from such a project, I 
made gratitude boxes for the children and grandchildren 
from photo boxes purchased at a local craft store.  They 
will recieve them as Christmas gifts.
 
Thank you for letting me share with you this idea to 
remember those things we are grateful for.

Answer:

This is an excellent idea for a holiday gift. Not only 
is it enjoyable for you to create these boxes, but 
unlike a toy or clothing they will grow out of, this is 
a gift that keeps on giving. I sure hope one of the 
first "entries" they make is that they are grateful for 
having such a positive and thoughtful mother and grand-
mother. Kudos to you!

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Question:

I'm not sure whether I suggested the following when you 
first posted the article about the rabbi and the woman 
with cancer (lovely and poignant story: there is no know-
ing how God works) but I found the following book extreme-
ly helpful and full of insights about how it is to grow 
old:

The Second Half of Life: Opening the Eight Gates of Wisdom
by Angeles Arrien

In it she does address the spiritual side of the second 
half of life.

Interestingly, I was talking to a Jewish friend of mine 
and he said that you're not allowed to deal with mystic-
ism and other deeper aspects  of life until you're over 
forty. What wise counsel.

I think that as we grow older (grow up? I feel I've just 
grown up having passed my half century four years ago) 
one is more reflective and hence, probably, more spiritual 
(I am a Christian, by the way--so this may influence my 
views) since I (we?) can no longer compete with the young-
er generations -- they've more energy, enthusiasm and 
general get up and go. But we do have more wisdom...

Thanks for your column. Always a challenge and sometimes a 
comfort.

Answer:

Thank you for the book suggestion. I will certainly check 
it out and I encourage my readers to do so as well. I 
agree that spirituality is best understood after one has 
lived more life. It seems to be this pairing of spiritual-
ity and wisdom that allows us the ability to make peace 
with ourselves and often our life circumstances. In fact, 
it seems that the gratitude of which we have been talking 
stems from both a spiritual awareness and the wisdom to 
see the big picture. Many thanks for your Sage words.

------------------------------------------------------------
     For more insight and advice from Dr. Lynn visit:              
fiftyandfurthermore.com

------------------------------------------------------------

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