Gratitude is latitude as we edge towards 2011.
The greatest wisdom is bred as a function of pain. Given the painful strain the last few years, it's time to reflect upon the wisdom of gratitude and the blessing of perspective as we edge into the holiday stretch.
With Thanksgiving upon us, I would like to take a moment to humbly acknowledge my blessings, some of which have little to do with financial markets.
- I'm thankful to have the ability to learn and the capacity to change.
- I'm thankful for the smell of rain and the warmth of sun.
- I'm thankful that while most people try to get ahead, there are folks who give back.
- I'm thankful for my failures for they've helped shape who I am today.
- I'm thankful for the perspective that 9/11 provided.
- I'm thankful for having discovered that the definition of professional nirvana is doing what you love with people you respect while serving the greater good.
- I'm thankful that my grandfather Ruby still guides me years after he passed and my grandmother enjoys margaritas at the age of 90.
- I'm thankful that my mother, brother, sister-in-law, and their kids are healthy and happy.
- I'm thankful for the blessing of Jamie and her beautiful children.
- I'm thankful for those who will support The Ruby Peck Foundation for Children's Education at Festivus on December 3rd.
- I'm thankful that some people believe their name and word still mean something and honesty, trust, and respect are the foundational constructs of any successful endeavor.
- I'm thankful that Minyanland has helped more than 550,000 children better understand the building blocks of earning, spending, saving, and giving.
- I'm thankful for the things I've learned and the opportunity to learn more.
- I'm thankful for the wisdom of Bennet Sedacca.
- I'm thankful for the memories of Joel Pollack.
- I'm thankful for good tunes and the laughter of little kids.
- I'm thankful for summer sunsets and fall foliage.
- I'm thankful for warm fires on winter nights.
- I'm thankful that people are beginning to understand that financial literacy is a life-long process.
- I'm thankful that I can taste key lime pie.
- I'm thankful for those who practice humility above hubris.
- I'm thankful that I can feel cold sheets in a warm bed.
- I'm thankful that I can still exercise even if I choose not to.
- I'm thankful each and every time the Oakland Raiders win.
- I'm thankful that mistakes become lessons if we choose to learn from them.
- I'm thankful for Phoebe and Crash and yes, Truffles and Fudge.
- I'm thankful for every day, even if some are better than others.
- I'm thankful for friendships that withstand the test of time.
- I'm thankful for the strength that allows me to shoulder hardships.
- I'm thankful for those trying to effect positive change.
- I'm thankful for those that lead by example.
- I'm thankful for BLT Popovers and Frozen Hot Chocolates from Serendipity3.
- I'm thankful that I've realized that the purpose of the journey is the journey itself.
- I'm thankful for President Fish, MV management, and our dedicated staffers.
- I'm thankful for the things I once took for granted or failed to mention here today.
And I'm thankful there are people who will read this column in the manner with which it is offered.
There's no denying we live in difficult times. With unemployment on the rise and societal acrimony on the prowl, it's easy to point fingers, place blame, and long for what we want rather than appreciate what we've got. The geopolitical landscape is fragile; one sneeze away from protectionism, isolationism, or perhaps something worse.
Each of us is blessed to be in a position to make our mark and do our part to effect a positive outcome. That is not to be squandered.
Society is a sum of the parts; as part of society, it's not only our right to question the status quo, it's our responsibility. That doesn't mean we should grab a pitchfork and vilify our leaders, it simply means we should be heard, for there is strength in numbers and unity in benevolence.
And that, my friends, is something to be thankful for.
Todd Harrison is the founder and Chief Executive Officer of Minyanville. Prior to his current role, Mr. Harrison was President and head trader at a $400 million dollar New York-based hedge fund. Todd welcomes your comments and/or feedback at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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