There’s no doubt 2016 has been a strange year in business, environment, entertainment, and politics. The animosity across social media alone is reason enough to curl up in a ball with a favorite movie, a glass of wine, and a fur baby to pet to lower your blood pressure.
Let’s take a deep breath. Close your eyes. Ignore your notifications. Slowly inhale…all the way to your belly. Hold it for a second. Slowly exhale. If you’re like me, you might want to do that a few times several times a day.
There are reasons to be grateful. I promise. It might not seem like it with the screaming headlines and protests but you simply must focus on the good things so you can make it through all of this.There are reasons to be grateful. I promise. #ThankfulClick To Tweet
12 Reasons to Be Grateful Right Now
1. You’re alive and reading this right now. Life can be complex and frustrating (believe me, I feel it, too) but you woke up this morning. That’s one in the “win” column!
2. Plenty of ways to follow your passion. One of the best things about a world that’s so connected is the ability to determine your passion, figure out ways to feed it, and even make a living doing it.
Whether you’re in love with writing, reading, music, art, or crafts…there’s a place for you in the big picture. The access to what you love to do is out there waiting and you don’t have to look very hard to find it.
3. The opportunity to right mistakes. We all make them. It’s part of what makes you human. As of this moment, you have choices. You can learn from mistakes, get closure, or apologize for something you might have done.
4. Another day to make your life plan. The happiest and most successful people don’t arrive at those milestones by accident. They make a plan and work hard to get there. If your personal universe isn’t where you want it to be…only you can truly change it. Love, money, health, and everything else depend on you being on board and ready to work.
5. The people in your inner circle. They’re people who lift you up, push you forward, and make life better simply by existing so you can know them. We choose the people we allow close to us, giving them access to the deepest parts of who we are. Treasure these connections as your biggest reason to be grateful.
6. Chances to laugh. Humor heals and this is definitely the time for it. Between cat videos and silly memes and stand-up comedians, you can find the exact thing to give you the giggles. Take an hour and scroll through your favorite streaming site for some much-needed laughter. You won’t regret the time well spent.
7. The beauty of kids and animals. When things get dark, few things give you a much-needed pick-me-up than snuggling with your cat, dog, or a silly toddler. The way they think and feel is simple. They react to love and kindness.
A cat curled on your lap, a dog chasing a ball, or a small child telling you all about the amazing thing they learned that day can go a long way to healing your tired or cynical heart.
8. Access to foods you love. Comfort food has the name for a reason and with the holidays coming up, you might need them more than ever. Sure, you may enter January with a couple of extra inches but cross that bridge when you get to it.
If this time of year causes you stress, a piece of pumpkin pie or plate of old favorites is a little “win” but a win nonetheless.
9. Natural beauty all around you. No matter if you live in the city, the suburbs, or the country, there are plenty of ways for you to reconnect with nature and everything it has to offer.
You don’t have to buy thousands of dollars in expensive gear to enjoy the park, go for a walk (maybe with your faithful companion), or take in the stunning expanse of a starlit sky. Taking a few minutes to “plug in” to the world around you is crucial to your mental health.
10. Being wiser today than you were yesterday. Every interaction, every second of your life is a chance to learn something new. About yourself, another person, how the world works…the possibilities are endless.
Every interaction, every second of your life is a chance to learn something new.Click To Tweet
11. The incredible ability to connect. If you’re someone who’s primarily alone in the world, that you truly don’t have to stay that way is an amazing reason to be grateful. The power of the internet (and the millions of apps) makes it possible for you to connect to a new online friend who may live thousands of miles (or an entire continent) away. This is great for people who don’t have the resources to travel or who may suffer from social anxiety.
The web often separates us into bubbles but it also gives you the opportunity to expand your horizons and venture beyond your small piece of the world.
12. One more glorious chance to be you. You’re not perfect. None of us are. However, we tend to decide the level of our imperfection on metrics decided by other people. I don’t fit neatly into a box and I’m certain you don’t either. Whatever makes you different (and don’t believe the hype that we’re all pretty much the same), you need to celebrate and nurture.
It’s okay to be introverted (or extroverted), to like animals more than people (or avoid animals entirely), to listen to indie music few people know (or follow your favorite boy band), or simply to write the words that inspire you, help the people you think need it, or bake cookies to find inner peace. The point is that you be who you are and love that about yourself. A housewife (or husband), a corporate giant, a field worker, a pastor…do what you love and love what you do.
At the end of the day, your reasons to be grateful are specific to you. They define you, say much about you, and are your reasons for getting up every day and doing it again.
Right now, I’m grateful for my upcoming Friday night ritual. Once I shut down my home office, I’m going to take a glorious (overlong) shower, make myself something delicious, pour myself a glass of wine, and curl up with some mindless television. My own little reward that isn’t fancy or expensive or difficult to achieve.
Maybe your life isn’t where you want it right now and that’s okay, too. Figure out what you want and how to get there so that this time next year, you have many more reasons to be grateful.