Gratitude as a Way of Life

Welcome to my blog!

Writing a blog is something I’ve wanted to do and have been encouraged to do for years. But I’ve not been inclined to start until now. I write for a living as a freelance business and technology journalist, and my thinking was, why write more stuff in my spare time?

After I’d finished working for the day, including writing blogs for a lot of my clients, I really didn’t want to keep writing. I also didn’t want to spend time on the weekends doing something I was doing during the week.

So why start this now? For one thing, I’ve cut back on my work time for a variety of reasons, including some major health issues. As a result, I have a bit more time to create content on topics that are more personal than cloud computing, cyber security and other areas I typically write about.

There’s a much more important reason, though. I feel called to do this. A few recent scares, such as a cardiac arrest that left me clinically dead for nearly 10 minutes before being revived, got me thinking that maybe it’s time to put my thoughts down for the world to see.

My goal in writing this journal of experiences and insights is simple: to help remind readers, and myself, that all of us have much to be grateful for, even if doesn’t seem that way when life is throwing challenges at us. Despite all the things that can and do go wrong—big and small—we can look for and find reasons to embrace gratitude as a way of life.

Practicing gratitude can have profound health benefits, according to research at the University of Southern California. This includes better sleep, reduced symptoms of physical pain, lower blood pressure and a bunch of other results associated with better health.

Being grateful comes in many forms and it can help us to better deal with the challenges we might be facing—no matter how overwhelming they seem.

I have no financial motivation in starting this blog and I’m not looking to gain more attention online. As a long-time contributor to some of the most popular technology sites online I’ve had plenty of Internet exposure, so that’s not what I’m trying to achieve.

This is meant to be a place where you can come by for a few moments to share in my experiences and—I hope—take away some insights that will help you in some way. We all need help now and then in finding the bright spots in life.

For this endeavor to be successful, it needs to be interactive. I hope you will feel comfortable contributing your own thoughts and experiences in the comments section or by sending me a note privately.

In future posts, I plan to share experiences I’ve had and what I’ve taken away from them. Some of these have been extremely difficult; others more typical of the day-to-day struggles we all experience.

I know you have plenty of choices of places to spend your time online, so I truly appreciate your stopping by and I hope you’ll come back. I also hope you will share the link to this site with anyone you know who’s having a hard time and might be inspired. And please feel free to provide feedback. I’m always looking for inspiration, and anyone can provide inspiration to others if they choose to.

In my next post I’ll discuss a recent health crisis that led to an unexpected and initially devastating result, as well as a significant change in my way of life. I’ll describe how I was able to embrace gratitude during some of the darkest moments of this experience.

“I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought; and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”—G.K. Chesterton

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18 responses to “Gratitude as a Way of Life”

  1. Dave Gartlan Avatar
    Dave Gartlan

    Uncle Bob, I am very happy that you are doing better. I look forward to reading your insights about life. I think Mohammad Ali said it best, live everyday like it is your last, because someday you will be right. Take care, Uncle Bob!

  2. Bob Violino Avatar

    Hi Dave! Thanks and great to hear from you. I hope all is well.

  3. Tim Violino Avatar
    Tim Violino

    This is a great idea! I’m really looking forward to learning from all the inspiration you have to share.

    1. Bob Violino Avatar

      Thanks Tim!

  4. Paul Schindler Avatar

    I’m glad you’re putting this blog out there and I will point to it from mine (which goes back either 25 or 50 years, depending on how you count print). We seem to be similarly motivated. You: 10 minutes clinically dead. Me: ventricular fib blackout at 60MPH on Interstate 680. Air bag, seat belt, and swerved away from traffic instead of into it. This is the best moment of my life. Now this is. Now this is. I write regularly about gratitude and mindfulness; here are some entries that were easy to Google. And a bunch on the subject of loving kindness, which, I feel, is related.

    gratitude poem

    gratitude practice

    Taken for Granted

    Love and Medicine

    All my loving kindness posts

    I don’t know if this should be a source of gratitude, but there is essentially no archive in the world (especially not on-line) of the tens of thousands of words we wrote at CMP. Some days I am sorry it is all gone, some days I am grateful.

    1. Bob Violino Avatar

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts and the links Paul.

  5. Barbara Call Avatar

    Hi Bob.. we only worked on a few tech-related projects together in the past… but this is great. I also believe in the power of gratitude- and I’m a writer myself – so I look forward to reading and perhaps sharing in the near future! I’ve dropped in the website address for my “Wren Ceramix” pottery creations and occasional blogs. Shameless self promotion acknowledged – but I really wanted to share for the writing.

    1. Bob Violino Avatar

      Thanks Barbara

  6. Ron Steinmiller Avatar
    Ron Steinmiller

    Bob. This is great. We all need support at various times for a multitude of reasons.

    1. Bob Violino Avatar

      Thanks Ron

  7. Steven Avatar

    What you shared comes at an excellent time for me. After a nerve-wracking experience as a startup founder, I decided to take time for myself.

    I quickly got pulled back into the workforce. I avoided full-time job opportunities and decided to do consulting. Because of the tech downturn, I nearly lost all my customers, and the outlook for the near future is not bright. This situation is not easy to manage as someone who has been career-focused since my teenage years, and also because savings are going down.

    But I recently became a dad, and your post reminds me that now is a perfect opportunity to really slow down on work, even if not by choice. As you said, you never know how long you and your loved ones have left. And my now-larger family is giving me a lot to be grateful for 🙂

  8. Bob Violino Avatar

    Thanks for sharing this, Steven, and congratulations on becoming a dad.

  9. Frank Grottola Avatar
    Frank Grottola

    Thanks for sharing this, what a great idea

    1. Bob Violino Avatar

      Thank you

  10. Lauren Avatar

    So glad you shared this, Bob! Gratitude is so powerful and (sometimes) fleeting all at once—the push and pull of balancing contentment and fulfillment. Part of the journey, I suppose :).

    Looking forward to following along and welcome the reminder to stay grateful!

  11. Lorraine Hall Avatar
    Lorraine Hall

    There is not enough of this Bob in our industry. I was in a coma three years ago for 4 days, and almost died, so I get it. I applaud your efforts. Blessings!!

  12. Michael Cox Avatar

    Thanks for sharing Bob and all the best! My wife and I had a similar wake-up call. While it wasn’t fun to experience and may have long term effects, we’re happier today because of it. We check in with each other more often with better awareness and a sense of gratefulness. Hug, kiss and hold hands more often Regularly watch together the sunset in the evening and the ocean, pelicans and porpoises during the day. We always ate pretty well, e.g., mostly organic with clean proteins. However, now our dinner plates have 1/2 the size meat as before and 3/4’s of the plate is organic veggies. We juice and drink organic greens daily. Only drink spring water except for coffee (wife)/match green tea (me), except for occasional glass of red wine for me (wife went cold turkey months ago). Most importantly, we’re walking together once or twice daily, and experimenting with stress reducing strategies, such as, Tai Chi, Qigong, etc. I get a deep tissue massage every couple-few weeks. Self-care is very important.

    1. Bob Violino Avatar

      Thank you, Michael, for sharing this story about you and your wife. Glad to hear that something positive has come from the wake-up call. I wish you both the best.

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