Thank you for everything
Written by
Satya Robyn
September 2011
Written by
Satya Robyn
September 2011

Sometimes, it's easy to be grateful.


It's easy when I bounce someone else's baby on my knee and he grins up at me.


It's easy when I pull a jar of home-made blackcurrant jam from the back of the cupboard in the depth of winter, and spoon condensed summer onto my toasted teacake.


It's easy when I receive an email from a reader telling me that Leonard, the kindly gardener from my book 'A Blue Handbag', accompanied her through her skin cancer surgery.


But sometimes the practice of gratitude is more challenging.

We don't feel grateful when we offer the chocolates around and someone takes the last caramel square (the one we had our eye on).

We don't feel grateful when the cat plants a trail of muddy footprints on our freshly-washed white sheets.

We don't feel grateful when we're in a hurry to get home and our car dies at a roundabout.

Sometimes, things go wrong. People let us down. We don't get what we hoped for. We disappoint ourselves.

Gratitude can help us to live through darker times.

It can remind us of everything we do have to be grateful for. We can enjoy the pleasure on our friend's face as she enjoys her caramel square. We can stroke our cat's belly and listen to him purr. We can be grateful for car mechanics, and for mobile phones.

It can also help us to find the learning in our difficult situations. Once we stop blaming the world for being awful, we might find a lesson we can learn. We might be able to hear something that we couldn't hear before. We might be able to help someone else through the same darkness.

Can we open up to the difficult bits? Can we say yes to blackcurrant jam AND muddy footprints? Can we say thank you for everything?



If you’d like to learn more about the art of gratitude, accompany me on my e-course The Art of Paying Attention during October, which I'm running in partnership with She Writes. Click here to find out more and to register for the class. I'm also starting a new series, Breathing Space, on She Writes radio at 3pm EST, today I'm looking at 'Writing Towards Joy'. Or listen to my first show about my mindful writing practice, small stones. Thank you.

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  • Satya Robyn

    Jodi - I was grateful to read your comment : ) Will keep you informed!

  • Jodi O\'Donnell-Ames


    You are so right about being grateful.  If I had room in my busy schedule I would love to do this, just not right now.  Please keep me informed.  And yes, I am grateful for waking up and reading- Thank You For Everything!

  • Satya Robyn

    Patricia - yes, doesn't it : ) 

    Andrea - thanks for sharing. The Art of Paying Attention ecourse isn't specifically designed to help you blog, but you could always blog all your responses to the creative writing exercises - do have a look at the information and get in touch if you have any more questions. It would provide you with daily motivation. It'd be lovely to have you along. 

    G.G. - ah, sounds like we're singing from the same hymn sheet - what a wonderful name for a blog. 

    Thanks all for commenting/reading. 

  • G.G. Vandagriff

    Fiona, I'm so happy you are doing this. It will help so many people.  My blog is called "Embracing Abundance" and just writing it and sharing it makes my life so much happier, and makes everything go more smoothly.

  • Andrea Heiberg

    Yes, it's important to feel grateful – but I think that many female writers struggle with weight issues, and honestly I’m not grateful when I feel this craving for chocolate, caramels, toffees. “Grow a spine,” an inner voice persistently says and I’m so grateful that I finally listened. I hate to see my body ruined though I can enjoy seeing my published book right in front of me. Still, I’m grateful that a British publisher risked publishing a Dane who writes in English. It’s a pretty much impossible situation being an unknown Danish writer seeking an English speaking audience. Well, anyway, I did it and I’m grateful.

    But how did I do it? Well, I wrote a lot of stories directly in English, had an American editor and joined an E-course at Gotham’s.

    I love E-courses because they give me a chance of meeting fellow writers and to learn something about writing. I’d like to learn how to maintain a blog. Well, how “to capture the world.”

    Do you think that I could learn anything about blogging during your course?

  • Patricia A. McGoldrick

    Glad you did not omit the caramel square, Fiona! That brought home your point so well!

  • Satya Robyn

    Bridget - I almost left that 'enjoying watching your friend eat the caramel square' example out because I thought it might be stretching the realms of realism a teensy bit... ; )

  • Bridget Straub

    That caramel is a tough one!