I left this year’s SUMMIT feeling inspired and super charged to continue the work of our organization to support, promote, and inspire women in manufacturing. I was impressed by the amazing women and men I had the opportunity to meet at this year’s conference and was so grateful for the time and talent of my team who produced such a seamless event.
During the conference, I personally was moved by the presentation delivered by Lisa Ryan on the subject of gratitude. In recent years, I have heard a lot about this concept of gratitude. In all honesty, I chalked it up as probably being a hokey practice that was created for some new vein of business and retail. I was refreshingly surprised by Lisa’s message about why gratitude is really important, and it is not just about keeping a journal and saying ‘thank you.’ It is something much more significant. It is about taking time for yourself in solitude to assess those things that we are blessed with and to take stock of those things that we have been given.
Since returning from the SUMMIT, I have really taken Lisa’s message to heart. Yes, I have started a gratitude journal which now resides at my bedside and regularly gets jotted in, but more importantly I have become more aware of those little things in my life that I had taken for granted previously. I have begun taking daily half-hour walks where I take in the beauty of my surroundings and recognize the fact that I am lucky enough to have mobility and walk. I have put down my phone more often than in the past to be more present with my children. I have worked vigilantly not to let work creep into family time at night and to spend those critical hours between after school and bedtime with them and engaged. I have begun to better appreciate my friends and family, letting them know how much they mean to me and how thankful I am for them.
All of us are under a lot of stress and pressure from our jobs and daily lives, and it is so important to find an outlet to decompress and be thankful. As we get ready for our annual celebration of thankfulness, I plan to continue this practice of gratitude, soak in this time with family and friends, and as the Pearl Jam song encouraged us, I will “just breathe.”
Allison Grealis Founder and President Women in Manufacturing (WiM)