Being Grateful in the Midst of the Messiness of Life. Jean Trebek interviews Kristi Nelson, author of "Wake Up Grateful"

insidewink co-founders, Jean Trebek and Alison Martin, discuss being grateful even in the midst of the messiness of life with Kristi Nelson, Executive Director of and author of “Wake Up Grateful” 

“My practice is grateful living. And it’s literally in every single moment.

Our video editor, Jeanette Dubois said it best, “Sometimes the universe has a way of putting it together”… and that is so true of our interview with Kristi Nelson.

Over the summer, Jean felt inspired to reach out to Brother David Steindl-Rast for an interview. At 94, Brother David has lived a rich and varied life of service with a focus on the importance of Gratefulness. He is the founder of the Network for Grateful Living which is probably most meaningfully expressed through, “an interactive website with several thousand participants daily from more than 240 countries and territories.”

Brother David was unavailable and so, in July, Jean was put in touch with the executive director of, Kristi Nelson. Kristi has a very impressive resume – Harvard graduate, business coach, is the author of the new book and has a background in working with socially conscious and spiritually based organizations. A stage 4 cancer survivor, Kristi’s life is deeply rooted in the gift of gratitude.

The first minute you meet Kristi you sense her openness. Relaxing you with her confidence and a quick smile, Kristi immediately feels like an old friend. Our interview touched on so many topics, Jean and I felt like we could have spoken with her for hours.

We spoke to Kristi in a zoom video interview months ago and received the final edits on November 12th. The words that Kristi spoke then are even more meaningful now.

It feels so completely perfect that even though this was filmed almost 6 months ago, this interview is ready and going out to everyone the week before Thanksgiving.

RELATED: An Engaging Conversation with Maria Shriver & Jean Trebek

Kristi Nelson, author of "Wake Up Grateful" and Executive Director of

“Kristi has spent most of her adult life in non-profit leadership, fundraising, and organizational development. In a wide variety of roles, she has helped to lead, fund, and strengthen organizations committed to progressive social and spiritual change.”— website

Order her new book, Wake Up Grateful” here

Trusting in Life and Being Grateful

The idea of using difficulty as an opportunity to open our hearts is such a poignant concept right now. We are in the middle of such a trying time with loss, stress, fear seemingly everywhere. When Kristi speaks about trusting life and allowing ourselves to feel grateful, even in these moments, is so powerful.

RELATED: Self-Improvement & Your Critter Brain That Gets in the Way

What Can We Learn From Life’s Difficulties?

“I think we can be grateful for the difficulties. When we make use of them to awaken our aliveness to what matters to us. So what is there to learn in a difficulty? How can I grow from this difficulty? How can my love be awakened and expressed in a greater way in this difficulty?”

—Kristi Nelson, What Does Gratefulness Activate in You?

Thank you so much Kristi for spending this time talking with us!

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Alison Martin -- wife, mom, Emmy-award winning actress, writer, chocoholic. Bronx Italian, daughter of Pultizer Prize winning reporters, who also identifies as L.A. Irish. Shout outs: Dan, Em, Brady, pooches - LuLu & Ted, friends, Mother Earth, serendipity, peace, VIPHS, living life like your socks feel real good.

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