Hi from Oregon! We flew to Portland this week so I could do some local TV to promote my new book, as well as a book signing. I am looking out at a marina as I write, enjoying the grey skies and gentle pitter-patter of rain. I absolutely love this weather, the kind that makes me want to curl up with a cozy blanket and just relax.

And yet, several people have apologized for the weather since we arrived. At the car rental kiosk, the person helping us said they were sorry that we would be here for such bad weather. And when we arrived at our hotel, the manager who checked us in said “I’m so sorry for this rain! Too bad you won’t be able to enjoy Portland properly.”

I find this so interesting, because I have literally the opposite reaction. I live in Southern California, where the past five years have shown us one of worst droughts in its history. Because of this, when I see rain, I immediately feel grateful. A thunderstorm seems like a cleansing, nourishing gift to the planet. I love where I live and enjoy the consistent warmth and sunshine, but there is something about the change of seasons that I really miss.

I have many friends who live in cold climates and would love to trade places with me. And the funny thing is, when we moved from New York City ten years ago, I could not wait to leave rain coats and boots behind. So why do I crave a dose of it now? What is it about not having something that makes us miss it?

I often use the color blue when I ponder questions. As the color of truth and wisdom, blue helps us see any situation more clearly, so that we can learn from it. To try it for yourself, close your eyes and picture yourself bathed in blue light whenever you want a boost of inner guidance. When you feel like you can see the blue light clearly in your mind, ask for insight on your question and see what comes up.

When I meditated with blue this morning, a thought floated to the surface of my consciousness; lack helps us have gratitude for abundance.

Although no one would ever consciously want to experience a lack of abundance, we are more likely to appreciate what we have if we know what it’s like to not have it. We are more likely to have gratitude for joy if we also know what it’s like to experience sadness. Good health is that much sweeter when we overcome an illness. Yin and yang.

This weekend also marks my 40th birthday, so we decided to make this a vacation and will be driving to a small beachfront inn. After the excitement and energy involved in launching my book, I look forward to a few days of quiet and reflection.

Even though the weather calls for rain and clouds the entire time we are there, I am profoundly grateful for it. This feels like the perfect change of pace for me. After three straight weeks of promotion, interviews, writing and being in a work headset, I am ready to reverse the energy. The idea of having 48 hours of rest, recharge and celebration is just what the doctor ordered. Yin and yang.

What kind of change would give you a greater sense of gratitude? Let me know in the comments below! It could be feeling the sun warm your skin, or perhaps the chill of rain. Socializing with friends, or hibernating and focusing on self-care. It’s all about balance, so we can increase our gratitude. Often when we change our energy, it will help activate other needed changes. If we want achieve something new or expand our horizons, looking to the other side of the fence is a great source of inspiration.

Now is a perfect opportunity to indulge in something different in your life.

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