As my wife Suzette and our son Corey battled through a game of Angry Birds on her Kindle, I stared out my window from the seat behind them.

It was May. Viet Nam was hot- drenched in humidity.

Much of the 2-hour train ride from Hanoi to Haiphong sliced through sunken fields.

Mile after mile, paddy after paddy.

Near mid-trip, a thought ripped across my brain, pushing my consciousness to a profound awareness regarding what I was witnessing outside that train…

I could’ve been born…here.

That could be me out there- bent under a scorched sun, half-way to my knees in muck, tending stalks of rice.

Yet here I was in air-conditioned comfort. About to enjoy banh mi and chilled juice being served up by two young Vietnamese ladies- on my way to another adventure, and another night in a four-star hotel.

That could’ve been me out there.
That could’ve been…you.

I am so blessed.

And I’d lay good money- you are as well.

After all, you’re reading this, in relative comfort.
You feel safe.
You have clean water and plenty of (too much) food.
You don’t have to work seven days a week.
You make [way] more than $1 per day.
You have time to do things you…like to do.

Me too.

On that train in Viet Nam, I felt whacked by a 2X4 upside the head: I had been [very] GUILTY of taking things…for granted.

Here’s what I’ve discovered since-

When I consciously FEEL gratitude, when I say “thank you” [and mindfully mean it], these are my best and favorite moments.

When I do so often enough- these are my very best days.

Doing this day after day- I have my very best weeks, and months.

You see, you simply can’t feel grateful and ‘down’ (or stressed or pissed off) in the same moment.

I’ve discovered that mindful gratitude is the foundation for fulfillment, for feeling content, for being…happy.

Yes- we tend to take WAY too much for granted.

Remember…

That could’ve [easily] been me out there.
That could’ve [easily] been you.

So here’s the question-

What are you grateful for…right now?
Stop and think about it. REALLY think about it.
Then, say “Thank You”. And say it again. And again.

Do so, and you’ll have a few great moments.
Do so often- your life will transform.

And now it’s my turn-
Thank you for caring enough to read this.
Thank you for all you are doing to help make our world a better and safer place.
Thank you for being you.

Have a GREAT week!

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