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This Is What Believing Looks Like

This Is What Believing Looks Like

By Maria Shriver
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I don’t know about you, but I am always looking for new things to inspire me. I am always looking for new ways to be challenged and motivated to grow.

These days when there is so much that can get you down (our politics, our climate, inflation, etc.), it’s important to focus on the things that give you hope and help you rise above.

Thankfully This week, there were several things that helped me do just that. For starters, I was blown away by Patagonia founder Yvon Chouinard's decision to—quite literally—give his company away to nature. All of it. In his announcement, he said, “Instead of extracting value from nature and transforming it into wealth, we are using the wealth Patagonia creates to protect the source. We’re making Earth our only shareholder. I am dead serious about saving this planet.”

Wow. Chouinard has always been an inspiring leader, but his bold decision to give away his entire company—worth billions of dollars—to fight climate change was a game-changing move for business leaders everywhere who put purpose over profit. (You can read his letter here.) Patagonia’s success is a north start to me at MOSH. Building a company with purpose is no small feat. Chouinard’s gesture is now a challenge to all of us who are trying to prove that businesses themselves can be Architects of Change.

I was also inspired this week by the reaction to Queen Elizabeth II's death. I was struck by how many people lined up for hours to pay their respects simply because they wanted to say "thank you." Person after person said, “Thank you for your service. Thank you for your sense of duty and steadfastness. Thank you for being a solid, steady force.” (I know there were plenty of people who said other things as well, but right now I’m focusing on the two words that inspired me: thank you.)

All this got me thinking about the power and generosity of those two words: thank you. Then I read Mitch Albom's reflections in last week's edition of this Sunday Paper. Albom spoke about the impact Morrie had on his life. Twenty-five years later, Albom is still saying thank you to a man long gone, but whose life lessons he leans on and passes on in his life everyday. Albom's advice to be grateful for those who come into your life, even if they leave abruptly or have died, really moved me.

This week, I’ve tried saying thank you to a lot of people—people close to me and many I don’t know well at all. I said thank you to the new FedEx guy who comes by my office several times a week. Doing so sparked a conversation about the extreme heat and how hard it is for him to do his job in this weather. I believe our exchange was heartening for both of us.

I also said thank you to Mirrain, the man who parks the cars at my office building. He is the most positive person I know. When I asked him his secret, he attributed his joy to his relationship with Jesus Christ. His smile and generous nature impact every person who comes into contact with him.

I’ve said thank you in my morning meditations this week to people who are no longer in my life, but whose life lessons still stay with me to this day.

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