Gratitude as Culture

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One of the now long-standing traditions at Gulf Broadcast is the Morning Huddle. It’s a mandatory short meeting that lasts for not more than 7 minutes and starts at 08:37 every morning. The first thing we do at the Huddle is to share Good News where every member of the team shares a good thought or deed she or he has participated in, come across or witnessed. That always puts a smile on everyone’s face.

Thinking of this custom another way, it gives us all a chance to be grateful. It grounds us and reminds us to own our own experience and look at situations through a positive lens. We’ve found that this makes a lot of difference to the way we do business and allows us to start the day with a positive attitude.

This is not a flippant custom. It is one that I have come to look forward to because no matter how hard times are, thinking of a single thing that I am grateful for, eases that negative sense which sometimes might seem to have grown to be intolerable or overwhelming.

I can’t remember exactly why, but one day I was exploring the various groups on Facebook and came across a “90 Days of Gratitude” group. This group’s members are challenged to be thankful for five things each day for 90 days. The rules of this group are quite interesting:

  • Every day you have to make a post with 5 things you’re thankful for
  • No repeating anything from your previous lists (okay to repeat someone else’s)
  • Post the consecutive day count
  • If you miss a day, you have to start over from 1
  • When you get to 90 days, you go on “the victory board”
  • If you do it multiple times, you get a star after your name for each additional

As I know the positive effects that the Good News segment of the Daily Huddle had on me, I was quite convinced that multiplying that by five will result in even more benefits. What’s there to lose? At the very least, I will have contributed to happy and good news that might in some minute way offset the bad and sad news we’re inundated with. This is not escapism and I’m not belittling the heinous suffering people around the world are enduring; however, I believe we do need to delve in good news once in a while for our mental health and vitality.

With these thoughts in mind, I accepted the 90 Days of Gratitude challenge and started sharing my list of five things I’m grateful for every morning. I’d be grateful if you would do me the honour of following me on Facebook if you wish to read my daily lists. I hope they will inspire good thoughts in your own world.

For posterity’s sake, here are my entries over the last five days. Please do share yours, at least try it for a few days and see how you get along.

Day 1 – 14 May 2016

  • The Japanese hibiscus is flowering in my garden
  • The tweets of the graceful prinia is a constant pleasure as they nest in various bushes and trees in my garden
  • The rose-ringed parakeets have made a home in the eaves again, it’s a pleasure to see the parents at the water dish from time to time
  • The wild bees are all over the flowering cacti in the xeriscape border
  • Good coffee!

Here’s a short one minute movie I did for the inaugural day.

Day 2 – 15 May 2016

  • Wonderful relaxing and reconnecting weekend
  • Hung out with my eldest daughter and had coffee
  • Met a good friend, even though it was very brief but good to run into him
  • Spend a good part of the afternoon yesterday chilling in the garden
  • Had a good night’s sleep… bring on the day!

Day 3 – 16 May 2016

  • I’m on fire today and it’s only 08:28 -> 2 quotes submitted and 2 copyright infringement claims submitted too!
  • The new direction I have set for my company is solidifying with good orders
  • My daughter is progressing with her job search and starting a paid internship to bridge the gap
  • Re-imagining parts of my garden; improving the Buddha patch and converting the Banana patch into a zen space
  • Grateful that our Serenity Meditation, Yoga and Reiki Centre [website] is doing better than expected. Nice helping people with their lives and for my wife to expand her purpose.

Day 4 – 17 May 2016

  • Free medicines and medical checkups in Bahrain for citizens
  • My family and friends
  • My health
  • Gmelina phillipensis I’m gonna get you!
  • My son for cooking good lunches!

Day 5 – 18 May 2016

  • The Adeniums are flowering again. Love these “Desert Flowers”.
  • A good night’s rest
  • Really good workout at the gym
  • Completed a website redesign on time
  • Enabling a stellar employee to progress even further


A Garden Minute