Makarand Utpat

Goodbye 2016 with Loads of Gratitude

In Aug 2016, I visited Taj Mahal, New Delhi, and Agra, with my wife and my kids. It was our first trip to the northern province, what has been referred to as the Golden Triangle of Northern India. We hired a private mini-van with a personal driver to tour these historic cities. We had a ball with lovely memories to cherish and it was one of the best time of our lives. In Northern India, there is a signature food dish called “Sarso Ka Saag” that is quite famous (made up of mustard leaves). It is eaten with hot Corn Bread or Corn Roti and considered as the as the comfort food. I happened to make a casual remark to our driver, “Hey, are you going to eat Sarso Ka Saag with hot Roti when you go home tonight?” Our driver said, “Well, Sir, hot summer season is not over yet and I’ll get a chance to eat Sarso Ka Saag in the winter only.” It dawned on me that, sometimes, we take things for granted (especially living in America), not realizing the fact that how readily things are available to us at our fingertips. E.g. In India, the mustard leaves are available in the winter season. However, in New Jersey, I can go to any Indian Supermarket and buy frozen raw Sarso leaves and make that dish at home or I can just buy fully-prepared dish in the frozen isle (just heat and eat). No season restrictions! This is just one example of how resourceful US, as a country is, but I can readily expand it to other areas as well. Given where our driver was coming from and given his circumstances, I realized that the things are not as easy as I made it sound (albeit unintentional). There is a whole world out there who still struggles to make the ends meet. I happened to make casual remark but simply took certain preconditions for granted. So, as I embrace myself to welcome 2017, the thought is coming to my mind about the gratitude and how sometimes we tend to overlook it. So, I find myself with great deal of respect and gratitude taking this opportunity to say my thanks for being in America as this country that has offered me rich sets of opportunities. Also, many thanks to the LinkedIn community ( ) and professionals like you, I find myself with lots of respect and gratitude for making me a better reader and a better professional. So, in summary, I believe, practicing gratitude is a great habit because: 1) It makes you a better person- Sometimes, we have a tendency to see “The grass is always greener on the other side”.

We keep on comparing ourselves to our friends, colleagues and say “If I only could have what s/he has, I’ll be better off”, and remain muddled in it, where, in fact, we have many things to thank for. We tend to forget our very unique assets. Practicing gratitude allows you to turn the tables and take control of the situation. 2) It makes you a better leader and better professional- When a peer or co-worker delivers a value-add to the organization or a subordinate accomplishes an important milestone or when someone goes extra mile for your organization or if colleague or superior contributed to your professional growth, appreciate it by communicating with them.

Simply saying “thank you” goes long way. But, please remember to be honest and sincere when you are giving compliments. It is a great way to boost trust and uplift team members in the workplace, thereby contributing to create high performance culture. Here are 3 How-To tips on becoming good at practicing gratitude:

1)Keep a log or maintain a diary of what things you appreciate and are grateful for (e.g. Family, Profession, Health, Circumstances). Visit them often. It will allow you to keep things into perspectives when you need that extra jolt of motivation or to see things from other peoples’ perspectives. 2)Read and listen to successful peoples’ blogs, stories, or podcasts. 3)Do 1 and 2 often to form a habit as this attribute is one of the cornerstones of the outrageously successful people. I’d love to hear what gratitude practices you follow and what you are grateful for, by commenting below. To your Success! Recommended Reading:

  1. Sir Richard Branson
  2. Tim Ferris
  3. Robin Sharma
  4. Brian Tracy
  5. John Paul DeJoria