Gratitude & Generosity = Happiness

During some rejuvenation time in Mexico, over the holidays, we took a cooking class from a Mexican chef/restaurateur who was equal parts spectacular chef and spiritual teacher.

It was a chance to experience one of the best parts about travel, which is meeting local people and getting to know the culture. And this experience went beyond expectation.

In the class, as we chopped vegetables for an amazing salsa, we asked chef how well to chop the onion. Used to receiving precise instructions when learning something new, we were surprised when he said it didn’t matter.

What was important, he said, was the flavor and the experience – not just eating the salsa but making it.

He also stressed the importance of not cooking when you’re mad or upset because that energy goes into the food. Your food, he says, should be full of flavour and love.

A beautiful definition

His cookbook reflected this thoughtful approach to enjoying food, and a core value of the Mexican culture: that gratitude and generosity equals happiness.

I thought that was the most beautiful definition of happiness I’ve ever seen. Gratitude to ground you in all the things that are great and perfect, in this moment. Generosity being the willingness to share those things with other people around you.

It’s a reminder that when we don’t feel at our best – when we are less compelled to be generous – we can shift our mind, energy and our happiness by really appreciating where we are and what we have and sharing it with others.

In the class, we made new friends from another country, who we toured the city with for the rest of the day. The whole experience has stayed with me: amazing food, great conversations, laughter with new friends…so much to be grateful for!

The Challenge

  • If you already feel like you’re at a 9/10 or 10/10 in terms of both gratitude and generosity, take a minute to soak in and appreciate how wonderful that is.
  • If you’re not, what could you do to experience more gratitude or to be more generous today?

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