For Kelly Haracourt, gratitude is a foundation.
It’s not something that has to be chased; it’s something that always exists, and something in which she can ground herself.
Kelly shares more …
Please tell us about you!
I live in Grand Haven, Michigan, and I can’t imagine living anywhere else at this stage of my life! We get to enjoy the beauty of Lake Michigan, beaches, hiking trails, festivals all year round, the coziness of a smaller town, but easy access to bigger cities. My husband, Tomas, and I have been married for 12 years this month and we have two amazing kids that keep us on our toes. Our daughter, Madelyn, is 10 years old and our son, Logan, is 7 years old. Both kids are involved in sports, love to spend time with friends and family and teach Tomas and I something new every day.
I have been working at our local YMCA for the past 5 1/2 years as a group fitness instructor, race director and marketing coordinator. Prior to that, I had a full-time career in commercial interior design, which I still do as a side gig with some local architects. Every day brings something different, depending on which “hat” I am wearing, and I love it!
What does gratitude mean to you?
To me, gratitude is something that can be felt no matter what is going on in my life or in the world. I used to think that gratitude was the same as happiness. It isn’t. Happiness is something that you are often chasing. Gratitude is ever present. No chasing required. It is the ability to ground yourself in something that brings you peace, hope and joy, even when things seem to be falling apart around you.
I haven’t always understood the power that gratitude holds. It was something that I had to practice and build. But, once it was built, it became my foundation. It is what I stand strong and firm on every day of my life.
What about the Gratitude flower and mantra resonates most with you?
The gratitude flower has spoken to me in many different ways over the years. It has often been my go-to when I am running for someone else or for when I want to honor someone special to me — This is so much bigger than me and To honor a hero. However, more recently, as I have continued to practice and build my foundation of gratitude, the line To unite and connect. To admire, to love. speaks so loudly to me.
When I think about gratitude, or what I am constantly and consistently grateful for, I instantly think about people. People and the connections that I have with them. Each connection is unique, beautiful, and powerful in its own way. The greatest gifts that I have received in life are my people — my family and my “no matter what” friends. Whether I connect with them every single day, once a month, or a couple times a year, I know that no matter what, they are there. To unite and connect. To admire, to love. They are my peace, my hope, my joy. My ever-present foundation to stand strong on, when life is good and when it’s not.
Do you have any advice for women who have a hard time with gratitude?
Practice and build it. Find one thing that is consistent in your life, something that you can stand strong on, no matter what. That is your foundation of gratitude. Remember, gratitude shouldn’t feel like something you are constantly chasing. It is something that is ever-present. You might have to dig a little (or a lot) to find it, but once you do, you’ll know.
What are you looking forward to in the months ahead?
I turned 40 in March and I am choosing to run four 10K races this year. I wanted to choose a goal that was going to fill me up and to celebrate my ability to move and feel strong, rather than have a goal that was going to leave me feeling depleted and over-committed. So, I am really looking forward to enjoying the journey of these four 10K races. As always, I am also looking forward to creating memories with my family and friends this spring and summer. Bring on the sunshine!
Thank you, Kelly! We love — and appreciate — learning about your journey with gratitude.