Dear Friends of Jake and Jones,
A few weeks ago, during our monthly team meetings, I asked everyone to sit and write up to 30 things they feel grateful for. This exercise was initially introduced to me by Joy Margolis of The Joy System during one of our business coaching sessions. Sure, I had done gratitude lists before, but those lists for me were not honest lists. They were lists that I felt I had to write, lists full of all the rainbows and butterflies and all the things I take for granted. In Joy's office, a list began to spill out of me that was different and what I realized is that I was noticing and recognizing gratitude not only for the light and happy parts of my life, but also for the dark and harder parts and that was when this exercise of being grateful became relevant and real for me. We often think that the hard thing happening for me in this moment is to be pushed aside but we always learn that the hard thing was what brings us the beautiful things. It is easy to be grateful for what is good, but it takes courage to be grateful for what is challenging.
As I sat with my co-workers, the people who make Jake and Jones the magical place it is, I loved listening to their unique lists and seeing their own stories threaded in their lists. And yet, what I found so beautiful is the shared themes we find in gratitude - from friendship, to love, to basic needs being met, environmentalism, health, joy…we share so much in our lives.
Here are some little nuggets from each of us at Jake and Jones. I hope you find this as a fun window into our worlds, what we are bringing to our Thanksgiving tables this year and to inspire your list to be complex, deep and meaningful to you.
Lynne: I am grateful for the opportunity to parent and love my three step-children. I am NOW grateful for the challenges that life has presented that have made me into the strong and resilient woman I am today.
Kacy: I am grateful for the collective and communal awareness of our environmental impact. I am grateful to be excited to come to work. I am grateful to recognize that it is okay to say “no.”
Katherine: I am grateful for good books to read, the smell of lumbar stores and laughing at silly things, time to spend with friends and family, my boyf and When Harry Met Sally.
Jordyn: I am grateful for the shoes on my feet, the roof over my head, the air in my lungs. I am grateful that my dad is nearby and can come for Thanksgiving. I am grateful that my body can move and that I get to exercise.
Jen: I am grateful for humble people, the stars, my fear of flying, losing and gaining perspective, my kids health, access to health care, clean air, positive examples in love and relationship, being seen and heard, financial freedom, tennis, romance and my body just as it is.
Whether your Thanksgiving table this year is full of loved ones or it feels a bit lonely or maybe you don’t even celebrate Thanksgiving, I invite you with us to sit for a moment and dig deep into what is real for you around this word gratitude. I hope these lists inspire you and help you feel connected.
Happy Thanksgiving (from Japan),