“Acknowledging the good that you already have in your life is the foundation for all abundance.”― Eckhart Tolle, A New Earth: Awakening to Your Life's Purpose
Tania Luna calls herself a “surprisologist.” The co-founder and CEO of Surprise Industries, Luna uses her energy and insight to deeply reflect on how to delight and assist individuals and teams thrive in uncertain circumstances. She helps people develop the bonds needed to get through challenging times. As part of her TEDTalk she describes her early childhood with a sense of gratitude we greatly admire but few of us will ever truly grasp. During her program for TED’s Worldwide Talent Search in 2012, Luna's audience anticipated a lively talk about surprise and the importance of not being attached to outcomes. Instead, she was inspired to give the world a gift of her personal story. Many of her closest friends didn’t even know about her Ukrainian family getting asylum in the United States when she was 6-years-old or arriving in New York with virtually nothing. Tania Luna sees her work as connected to her upbringing one in which a little piece of Bazooka bubble gum, a thrown-out toy or a delivered pizza became magical. These were the childhood memories that gave her an appreciation for the joy of little surprises. If you haven't already, please take a moment to watch her inspiring TEDTalks presentation in the video above. It is a story of hope and gratitude you will never forget.
How do we show appreciation for our abundance? What is gratitude? Gratitude is the quality of being thankful for what you already have in your life. So many of us struggle with the material wants of life. We want to keep up with our friends, our neighbors, our co-workers and society. We want the newest SUV. We want the newest smartphone. We want the newest tablet. We want the newest designer coat. We want. We want. We want. But why do we want these things? Why do we feel the need to fill up our lives with more and more material possessions when we don't even appreciate what we currently own? What is our attachment to the material? Do we know abundance without the material? Do we appreciate our health, wealth, loved ones or the ordinary possessions we own? Do we appreciate the pizza, stuffed animals, Bazooka bubble gum moments enough? This is a question we all have to contemplate and answer for our ourselves. As we plan our lives, professions and relationships based on what we want to own, we should equally reflect on why we feel we need to own them.