I came across the word “Dayenu” in an article at Big Think, about Stephen Hawking.
Dayenu (Hebrew:דַּיֵּנוּ) is a song that is part of the Jewish holiday of Passover. The word “Dayenu” means, approximately, “it would have been enough for us”, “it would have been sufficient” or, “it would have sufficed” (day in Hebrew is “enough” and -enu the first person plural suffix, “to us”).
This traditional up-beat Passover song is over one thousand years old.
It got me thinking about all my accomplishments over my own lifetime and how little time I allow, for acknowledging those achievements. I don’t think I am alone in that, which is why I am posting this short reminder for all of us.
I’m not suggesting that we simply stop where we are and aspire no more! Yet I do think, we are often so busy striving for the next thing and the next thing, that we neglect valuable reflection time.
We forget to take a breath, to observe who we have become and to give thanks for what we have already achieved.
Each new year I usually create a list of 100 things that I have accomplished during the previous year. It’s not until that list is complete, that I create a list of 100 things that I want to do during the new year.
I’ve been remiss this year and didn’t do that, however I will sit down this week and make a point of it because I am so aware of the value of that particular exercise.
It’s such a great feeling to get that glimpse back over the year just gone and “really see & feel” that it was a year filled with successes. The achievements, that I include on my list, do not all need to be huge “save the planet” successes.
You’ll be amazed at your new-found energy after completing such a list and the creative space that it opens up, for looking into the next 12 months. It’s a very powerful exercise.
Ben Kweller adopts the word “Dayenu” in the song Lizzy on his album Sha Sha. On his website he writes…
“Dienu is like an old folk word that’s Hebrew and it means ‘it would have been enough’… when something good happens to you and then another good thing happens to you. What you had in the first place would have been enough, if nothing else happens to you. It’s all about counting your blessings and staying grounded.” –Wikipedia
Just for a few moments, stop and reflect on your year that’s just passed, and acknowledge it with your own sense of “Dayenu”.Breathe deeply and be perfectly OK with where you are right now, in this very moment Click To Tweet
Which is precisely the point of my self reflection exercise, using my “list of 100” as the example. There are, of course, many other ways in which to achieve the same result without needing to write that list. It’s only one way, that has made a difference to me each new year. Whichever personal method you choose, to get present to your previous year’s accomplishments… דַּיֵּנוּ “dayenu”!
Remember too, the Indivisible Sphere Of The Present exercise that I have shared with you before.
Use that exercise whenever you need to regain the power of the present.