Being bought up by a loving and religious mother (dad kind of stayed clear of this ‘emotional’ stuff); gratitude was one of the many virtues I learnt as kid.
After finishing school and working just long enough to save what I needed, I boarded my first aeroplane and flew to Europe. I back packed around the world for a couple of years. Coming home to a loving family and securing a great job that was the start of a ten year career, I remember saying to myself...”how lucky am I, what a fabulous life I’m leading”.
It was true, as I experienced life, I came across people who led far less fortune lives than me and who were working on themselves to try and move on from some terrible experiences. That made me more grateful.
As I grew my business and started a family, I came to realise that gratitude is a very important business and personal trait. So I thought we could look at this today in relation to property investing and developing.
A quick internet search delivers a brief yet I think, accurate meaning: ‘Gratitude, thankfulness, gratefulness, or appreciation is a feeling or attitude in acknowledgment of a benefit that one has received or will receive.’
In my day to day dealings I always try to thank people I interact with. Its good manners but also so important as you build relationships. My theory is to be nice and others will be nice back. It doesn’t always work but that’s the fun part.
I can still hear my mum saying “if you haven’t got anything nice to say, say nothing at all’....and I’ve already started using this on my kids. Sure, you will think a lot of non-positive thoughts during your day, but if you can manage your thoughts and deal with people with gratitude then I believe it will get you further than those who stamp their feet and who are rude and negative.
My husband used to call me ‘Mary Poppins’...always so cheerful...I have to admit that these days, Mary may have left the building but I do strive to be as positive as possible. It makes me feel good to be happy, it’s contagious and those you deal with may just reflect your mood.
If you’re in a bad mood don’t take it out on others, that’s just selfish and lots of people fall into this trap. But once you stop being selfish you appreciate other people and therefore appreciate when they do something nice hence you can be grateful. Gratitude can motivate the recipient to seek out their benefactor and to improve their relationship with them.
According to my internet source wikipedia.org, grateful people are happier, less depressed, less stressed, and more satisfied with their lives and social relationships. Grateful people also have higher levels of control of their environments, personal growth, purpose in life, and self acceptance. Grateful people have more positive ways of coping with the difficulties they experience in life, being more likely to seek support from other people, reinterpret and grow from the experience, and spend more time planning how to deal with the problem.
I find it helpful to be thankful for negative things (when you can!). The other week I was pulled over for speeding, as I waited for the police officer to approach my car, all sorts of things flew through my mind...”shall I mention my brother is a senior sergeant in the hope he’ll let me off? I used to do that but now I’m more responsible...or shall I try and make an excuse? I did neither, instead I apologised for going too fast and after I was issued my ticket and drove off, I thanked the Universe for the lesson. I shouldn’t have been speeding, it was my own fault, I take full responsibility and this was a lesson to learn – a $243 lesson at that.
So as you proceed with your property investments and research, be thankful for what you’ve discovered along the way. Offer a small word of thanks, or send a card or leave a message for those who have helped you; your accountant, financier, solicitor, real estate agent and your tenant whose rent is helping pay for your investment. You may find that gratitude will be returned to you sometime soon in the way of a fabulous investment opportunity.