Posts tagged gratitiude
We all have them. Those memories…the ones that when we think about them, a smile instantly sweeps across our face—those times in our life that will always give us a sense of comfort or a rush of excitement. As we get older and our impending mortality becomes even more prevalent, we sometimes lose focus of the good we’ve had in our life. As author Gary Buffone writes in his book The Myth of Tomorrow “our filter becomes clogged with negative thoughts, strangling the perceptions that encourage, support, and inspire our confidence.” Buffone goes on to advise that “we must take time to appreciate our strengths and assets, and recognize what is working and going well in our lives. When time is short, gratitude grows. Our mortality begs us to be kind.” These words are ones to live by.
I’ve hit some rough moments in my life, where I thought it impossible to see the good in anything in my life. Those moments, that rather than adding joy, cast a shadow of doubt and uncertainty in yourself and in your future. But when you find yourself among the midst of darkness, the only thing that you can do is get up and help others through their casts of uncertainty and doubt. This is what motivated me to dedicate my life to helping others get through their tough moments. I founded LifePilot Organization and the Todd Thomas Foundation, in honor of my son–thus shedding new light and purpose on my life.
Giving back is a beautiful thing. This selfless act brings out qualities in yourself you never knew you had. You become a role model for others, helping them pave their way through their own personal revival. I believe that having the ability to help others is a huge honor; and by acting on that honor you can change lives.
The Caring Institute was founded in 1985 to honor those values of caring, integrity, and public service. Their inspiration was the great Mother Teresa who taught us that all the world’s problems can be solved if people truly care for one another. The Caring Institute attributes this belief by celebrating the special people who transcend self to serve the disabled, disadvantaged, and dying. By honoring them, they strive to promote their work and present them as role models for all.
By request of Mother Teresa to founder, Val J. Halamanders, she insisted that the Institute yearly honors the five most caring adults and five most caring young people in America. People such as Paul Newman, Jane Goodall, Patch Adams, MaryAnne Shreder, Dave Thomas, Collin Powell, and Peggy Dolan adorn the walls of the Caring Institute, located in Washington D.C. This year, I was inducted into the Hall of Fame as 2010’s International Caring Award Recipient. Though, humbled and beyond flattered, I am just one of those who have taken devastation and turned it into something positive.
A dear friend of mine was a successful New Orleans businessman, who—like many—lost his home to Hurricane Katrina. He said that it surprisingly brought him and his colleagues and employees closer. “Katrina didn’t cause the problems; it simply revealed them. The disaster forced me to focus on what’s important; family, friends, giving back, and a sense of community.” He rebuilt his house and his company, and now helps entrepreneurs like him reach their full potential. “We may be giving our time and talent, asking for nothing in return, but chances are,” he explained “like it or not, we are going to receive much more benefit in unexpected ways as a result of our charitable actions. When you find clarity of purpose you can give it life and it will continue long after you are gone.”
So though, we are reminded of our mortality day after day, the key is to remember those happy moments that made it all worth-while. Be grateful for what and who you do have in your life, and help those who have lost how.