Is There a Difference Between Gratitude and Appreciation?

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Why do we have so many words in the English language? We’ve swiped/adapted many of the thousands of words that make up what we call “English” from other languages.


Trivia question: what percent of the English language comes from French? Answer: 45%. That’s amazing, isn’t it?


We love variety in our lives. And one of the ways we express that desire for diversification is in our everyday use of language.


One of the reasons I cringe when I hear the overuse of “four letter words” is that it’s such a lazy way of speaking. You need only a miniscule vocabulary to use the F-bomb as a verb, adjective, adverb and noun in every sentence. We English-speakers have an incredibly rich language open to us to explore and use. So let’s use it!


We use different words to mean similar things, but think about the words “pretty” and “beautiful” – both mean someone or something is attractive or pleasing to the eye. But they are different degrees of what we are trying to express, and usually beautiful is used for something of a higher degree.


It’s always subjective, of course, as is any expression of our thoughts via the clumsy use of language to define the indefinable and try to share what we experience in a way that others can get a picture of it in their own mind.


Back to Gratitude and Appreciation – are they completely the same? Think about it for a moment. All of us have our own reaction internally to different words, depending on how they were used in our family growing up, or in school and among friends and people who influenced our thinking.


Every word in our language is actually a vibrational use of speech that sets up a reaction in the person or persons who are hearing or reading that word and the complex construction of paragraphs, essays and books. Effective speakers and writers use language to paint pictures for their audience, but there is no way to resonate the same with every single person, because of our individuality and our own experiences with certain words.


If you have the practice of writing a daily Gratitude List, which is something I often recommend to my readers and in my coaching courses, you know that being grateful for something is also a way of saying that you appreciate having it in your life.


When we take gratitude further, we can generate the feeling in the present for what we want to magnetize to us from out of the “unseen” picture of it in our mind and into the physical so we can experience that new job or relationship or vacation.


But for many of us, if you grew up being scolded that you neglected to thank someone for a gift you hate, and being forced to say you are grateful for it, then the word “gratitude” can set up an invisible sense of dismay and anger inside. Perhaps even a big resentment! That energy will negate the good that you are trying to create with your Gratitude List.


If you sometimes have that feeling of resentment at the idea of “having to” be grateful when there are so many things going on in your life that you feel upset or unhappy about, try this…


Switch to the word “appreciate.” Here’s why:


When we shift into a word that resonates more happily with us, we can use it like a stepstool to reach that higher vibration where our results are waiting for us to catch up. Think about it a moment. In saying “I am grateful for…” we may unintentionally set up an image of someone else giving us something as if we are a lower sort of being, gifted with it and having to say thanks.


But when we say “I appreciate…” we may feel more empowered. We can look around us and say very easily, with no resistance, “I appreciate how pretty that flower is… I appreciate that I have clothes to wear and food to eat…”


And in that state of appreciation, we are feeling less resistance and doubt about deserving all the things on our vision or wish list…and we allow those wonderful outcomes to come to us.


Play around with the words you use to build your consistently higher vibration of happiness. You may discover that simply plucking a different word out of the vast dictionary of the English language will be the simple key to manifesting your desires.


When we turn our attention toward finding things and situations to “appreciate” in our lives, it uplifts us – we not only feel better about ourselves and our day, but we begin automatically attracting into our experience even more things to appreciate!


As Wayne Dyer put it: “What we appreciate appreciates.”


When money appreciates, it gains interest.


When we appreciate life, those things we are happy about multiply.


Start now…

I appreciate that no matter how my day is going, I can start over by changing my attitude to a more positive and hopeful outlook.

I appreciate that I always have second chances in any situation.

I appreciate that I am here at this time in history for a purpose.

I appreciate that I can help others smile.


Smile, and appreciate your ability to do so!


When we learn to reverse some of our old thinking habits that we learned in childhood from others who were taught the old way of reacting to live instead of creating what we want, then we truly have the power of manifesting our desires.


We manifest all the time—whatever goes on in our lives is something we vibrationally had a part of, no matter how awful it appears. Does that feel discouraging or too preposterous to believe?


What it means, though, is that we are already very high level manifestors!


You don’t have to “learn” how to create things on this planet. You’re already doing it all day long—but when we do it without realizing we are even doing it, then we’re acting in a haphazard way.


Try appreciating everyone around you. Today, find something to like about each person you encounter. Begin each day feeling more appreciative, and yes, grateful, for the incredible opportunities to create more joy in the world, and to be a part of progress for humanity.


with love,



I Dreamed Donald Trump Was Trying to Kill Me

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I woke myself out of a dream this morning.  It was just too darned strange, even for me. In the dream, I had just read the front page – having been mysteriously warned by hints in social media that I would find my name there.


And there it was! “Evelyn Brooks” appeared a few paragraphs into the lead story. It named me along with two other women whom Donald Trump had decided deserved execution.


Our capital crime? We had spoken out against him and refused to retract our statements of derision.


That’s right, in the nation founded on inalienable rights that include Free Speech, I was going to be shot (at dawn, I presume), for calling Trump “an unfit president” in my books, blogs and Tweets.


The Tweet Master was pissed.


Having been married for many years to what I thought was the consummate narcissist until Trump came into my horrified awareness when he was selected by the Republicans as their best bright boy to rule the Free World, I knew about the wrath of a narcissist.


It seemed that Trump was enraged by the remarks of a lowly woman, and an avowed, outspoken Democrat at that.


But… I had a champion (in this dream) – Rodney Dangerfield!  My late husband was a big fan of his and we had gone to see Dangerfield in person years ago (obviously when both Rodney and my husband were still alive).


Remember Rodney’s trademark line?  “I don’t get no respect!”?


So here I was, my life threatened by the biggest bully on the planet: the 45th POTUS. He has the power to annihilate all of us in one fell swoop, a scene of destruction that would far surpass the most horrific of exploding buildings and flying bodies that any Hollywood SFX team could devise, merely by ramming his Tweeting Thumbs on the Red Button in an idle moment, piqued by outraged vanity.


I can still see my dream hands holding that newspaper as I scanned the article, dreading what I would discover. I was, apparently, being accused of … something heinous … the words swam…  the way dreams shift from one seemingly logical moment to the next.


It seemed that my capital crime was rescuing a kitten.


As readers of my books know, I am more of a dog person, but I’m also an animal rights activist.


Where did the kitten come from in my dreaming mind? Last night I watched an old Jimmy Stewart movie called “Magic Town” in which the most adorable charcoal kitten — a ball of fluff wobbling on four legs — stayed the same age throughout the weeks the story represented. Magic, indeed.


We all know a kitten might symbolize innocence, helplessness, inability to defend itself against the world.


Much the way the world feels today in these days of Trump’s reckless presidency. Helpless to stop the bullies who pillage and destroy and taunt the helpless… and who tie cans to the tails of freedom.


Reading the paper, seeing I had been sentenced to death, I was… intrigued. After all, I write about the way we can nullify Trump and his ilk by getting into harmony with all that we desire to manifest, and I didn’t think I was going to manifest defeat at his hands. No way, no how.


In this dream, I knew that the moment I stepped outside my door, it would be a dark glasses moment, with all the world watching. I decided on black diamanté sunglasses and my sweetest LBD. After all, it appeared I was going to a funeral: my own.


The behavior of every tyrant – whether on the world stage or at the kitchen table – is driven by that narcissistic compulsion to be adored and feted and respected, without having to do anything to deserve such fealty, while in turn feeling nothing but contempt for everyone in his sphere.


Learn more about Trump’s extreme narcissism in Part Two “Inside the Mind of a Narcissist” in my book America’s New Breed of Freedom Fighters


I knew that Trump was just a man, but he was a man in power, and had decided that I did not have the right to live, and when a tyrant gets an idea he leaps over the process of actually thinking about such piddly things as rights and ramifications, and goes straight into demanding the result he wants: Off with her head!


Narcissists always surround themselves with people who are willing to do their bidding, for their own goals, or deluded by the charming lies a narcissist spins with such ease. Hence the various Puppet Masters who seemingly orbit around Trump’s dark star (they are not the deluded ones). Who are the deluded? The millions of Republican supporters who think it would be a terrific idea to postpone the 2020 elections until they can be positive Trump will be re-elected in the land of the free and the home of the brave.


The stars and stripes in our flag are trembling.


My dream shifted from reading the paper to being in a studio where Dangerfield was on stage. He pointed me out. The crowd yelled in excitement as I stood uncertainly.


But then he beckoned me to join him at the mic, “Come on, young lady.” I was so thrilled at being called a young lady that I flung my arms around him in a huge hug, blessing him for calling me young and whispering my age in his ear.


Rodney morphed into my late husband, who is now a very dear friend of mine since we chat now and then (albeit silently and with no witnesses but my Golden retriever) and have forgiven each other for the unhappiness of our long term marriage. It had started out in the mid-80s with such promise, as loving soul mates, but then deteriorated under the weight of his narcissistic personality disorder.


As the audience cheered, I was no longer in a TV studio. Another of those dream morphs: I was at a massive progressive rally, and I felt the LOVE. I knew that I had nothing to fear… except for fear itself.


I was going to live, to march another day.


And so I woke myself up, and began typing before I even had a piece of chocolate, realizing the friends on my Invisible Writing Team had just handed me a blog in dreamland, and I needed to capture it with digital pen and ink before it faded.


As I was walking Sugar Bear in Central Park before posting this at my site, I also realized the nightmare could have been far, far worse: I could have dreamed I’m a Trump supporter.


No worries, that will NEVER happen.


Read my Liberty & Justice Book Series on Amazon:

America’s New Breed of Freedom Fighters

What Were They Thinking?: Inside the Minds of Trump’s Voters (humor)

What Trump’s Voters Were REALLY Thinking: The Complete Report, Unedited  (humor)

When They Go Low WE GO HIGH