Gratitude Confession #5: Melissa!

Melissa Web-11

Melissa Web-11

When I do workshops on using the TIA Method (a method for cultivating radical joy, focus, and accomplishment), I start, of course, by explaining that TIA stands for “thank,” “intend,” and “ask.” The method advises starting your day in gratitude. Just make a list, short or long. Write it fast, no thinking. Note anything you remember from the previous day that brought you joy, pleasure, contentment, or deep satisfaction. Sometimes, newcomers to the method have a hard time getting started with the practice; gratitude is, after all, a muscle that must be strengthened over time. So I suggest starting out by naming a person you would like to silently thank in some way, whether it be a major figure in your life, or someone who made a minor appearance in your previous day.

Thinking of someone who helped you, or one who inspired you, or a person you find fascinating and want to know better, or just someone you adore is a good jump-start for your morning gratitude list. It reminds us of our connectedness to one another. It deepens our compassion for others. It sets us on a daily path of being open to and appreciative of others. It literally programs us for a day of open-heartedness.

How is that for good medicine??

So Gratitude Confession #5 is for a new friend of mine, a woman I met last February at a retreat in Costa Rica. As I came to know Melissa Joseph over the week-long yoga retreat, my admiration and interest in her grew enormously. She is a serious yogi, so we had that in common. She is athletic and active, in spite of some fairly serious injuries she has endured over her years of athleticism. She is a world-traveler and a philanthropist. She is a lover of words and an excellent poet. (Her book of poems, Tender Force, comes out in October.) She has a keen eye for beauty and a child-like curiosity that is infectious. And to put a huge cherry on top of a yummy piece of cake, she is flat-out, over the top hilarious. I fell in love with this woman.

During the course of the week, I gave her a copy of the TIA Journal. And last week, she sent me the following poem, inspired by the TIA Method. I was so touched by this lovely poetic response to the process, and I so appreciate her insight into what can happen to us (and for us) when we  undertake this simple habit.  So of course, she is on my gratitude list!

From the bottom of my heart, I thank you Melissa Joseph!


stop for 10 minutes

each day

not a certain

specified time

just a time

all 600 seconds

anytime, do this

during a 12 hour day

turn off all devices

put down the book


for 60 seconds

make a list

a grateful list

do this each day

for the remainder

of your life

your inner and outer landscape

will constantly be refreshed,

transformed, renewed

that list will become


you will surprise yourself

as a gift to others

InspirationLezlie Laws