I am grateful for Giving.
Here's a sample from the book - the letter "G." "Prayer of Giving: "Let generosity of heart and hand begin with me. Help me to create a better world through the giving of my unique gifts, talents and passions. Thank you for all you have given me so I may generously give to others. "I am grateful for GIVING. "Giving is its own reward. When we give to others, we share our divine inner light with them and help the world become a brighter, more illuminated place in which to live. Paradoxically, the act of giving to others begins with first giving to one's self. When we are physically, emotionally and spiritually satiated, we are able to joyfully give from a place of abundance. Initially, it may feel selfish to provide for ourselves -- whether it is a nap, a half hour of quiet time or a walk in nature. However, giving to ourselves is essential if we are truly to be of service to others. We are each responsible for our own self care so that we can have the capacity for generosity." "I am a generous spirit, giving freely from the abundance in my heart. I find big-hearted new ways to give to others. I take action to make a positive difference in the world."
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Indie Groundbreaking Book: Alphatudes
An Alphabet Book of Gratitude for AdultsSometimes complicated problems have simple answers.
For example, would you believe the key to happiness is as simple as reciting the ABCs? Well, maybe not quite that simple, but I’ve just discovered a wonderful new alphabet book for adults that reveals a simple concept for living a more joyful life: gratitude.
In her book, Alphatudes: The Alphabet of Gratitude, author Michele Wahlder presents the definition of an “alphatude”—a person, place or thing for which one alphabetically expresses gratitude—and shares the secrets of embracing a grateful, positive outlook and approaching life’s little challenges with grace, gratitude and hope.
The concept came to her during a bout of sleeplessness, when at her wit’s end, she was struck with an idea: “Instead of counting sheep, what if I counted my blessings? I needed a simple yet methodical way to lull my mind and ease my spirit into a place of restfulness. I started with the letter A and thought of apples. I consciously focused on how grateful I was to have such a wide variety of apples to enjoy. I thought of their many robust colors and flavors: red, golden, green, Fuji, Pink Lady, Granny Smith. My mind then moved on to the letter B as I imagined the beauty of the sunset I was blessed to witness earlier in the evening. A pattern of gratitude had begun!”
Wahlder goes on to describe meditating on her gratitude for a cozy winter coat, then her playful dog, on and on to the letter Z, and that she woke up the next day feeling rejuvenated. After building on the concept and sharing her ABCs of gratitude with others, the idea for the book was born.
In this, her first book, Wahlder takes readers on an extraordinary trip through 26 alphatudes drawn from spiritual principles and universal human concepts. (Acceptance, Beauty, Choices, etc.) Lovely illustrations, heartfelt prayers, affirmations, and quotes combine for a thought-provoking and life-changing exercise that is as powerful as it is simple. “Each alphatude can be utilized to achieve an even greater victory: a sustainable shift in thinking that leads to contentment, peace and appreciation in our lives today,” says Wahlder.
"Gratitude is choosing thankfulness and appreciation for all that is, the joyous and yes, the difficult. We are given an abundance of opportunities to be grateful because there are gifts and riches in every situation. It is up to us to be mindful and cultivate an awareness of these gifts in our daily life. Many times, it is only in the wisdom of retrospection that we come to fully appreciate the blessings in our life's challenges. However, they are there."
Alternately enlightening and enchanting, Alphatudes: The Alphabet of Gratitude will help readers discover how to heighten awareness and appreciation of life’s daily gifts, attract opportunities with a positive mind-set, and surmount life’s challenges by drawing upon a healthy reservoir of gratitude. Like it did for the author, this might set you free—once and for all—from worry, anxiety, negativity and resentment.
"Through the practice of gratitude, we build a positive mental outlook that lessens the pain of the bad times and doubles the enjoyment of the good times," she says. "In our modern culture, it is all too easy to fall prey to the negative messages of the news and media, which tell us what is wrong in our world and deficient about us. Gratitude shifts our focus to what is good, working and right, in our lives and in our world. It is a powerful tool for transforming our own attitude, while uplifting others in need of hope.”
According to Wahlder, “Research shows that positive people are generally happier, have more fulfilling relationships, and have a greater overall sense of well-being. The ability to sustain a positive outlook on life is a beneficial by-product of the practice of gratitude. My hope in creating Alphatudes: The Alphabet of Gratitude is to provide an easy-to-implement, effective means of helping others find the wellspring of optimism, serenity and prosperity that comes from the simple practice of gratitude.”
"I encourage people to strengthen their language of appreciation by expressing gratitude daily action, rather than just acknowledging gratitude as a lovely spiritual theory,” she says. “It is through the repetition that we reinforce and strengthen neural brain pathways that help us to have a positive outlook on life. I recommend writing a gratitude letter, keeping a daily gratitude journal, or begin and end each day with a prayer of gratitude.”
A native of Alexandria, Louisiana now living in Dallas, Texas, Michele Wahlder is an internationally-recognized certified life and career coach, career counselor, speaker, and gratitude enthusiast. She is the founder of Life Possibilities, LLC, a company that champions people to become the highest vision they hold for themselves in their lives,
careers, and relationships through the vehicles of coaching, seminars, and books.
A sought-after presenter, speaker, and coach who helps clients improve individual performance and organizational effectiveness, Michele has worked with numerous organizations, including Match.com, The Nielsen Company, Marriott International, Lucent Technologies, and Girls, Inc.
Wahlder understands first-hand the challenges associated with surviving a life-threatening illness and has allowed the experience to make her a stronger, more compassionate, and grateful person. Wahlder received a bachelor’s degree in Communications from Tulane University, a master’s degree in Counseling Education from Texas Woman’s University, and has studied at Stanford, Southern Methodist University, Cite Universitaire in Paris, and the University of Colorado. She is an active volunteer for several nonprofit organizations that offer adults and children opportunities to enhance their lives and pursue their dreams. She lives with her fiancé, Michael, “bonus daughter” Zoe, and Portuguese water dog, Moses.
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Alphatudes: The Alphabet of Gratitude, 26 Solutions for Life’s Little Challenges
by Michele Wahlder, MS, LPC, PCC.
128 pages, $12.95
Life Possibilities Publishing (March 2010)