It’s Thanksgiving in the US this weekend, a time of year when, traditionally, families gather, vast amounts of food are consumed, and thanks given. Even though we don’t celebrate the festival here, I like the idea of expressing gratitude. Of just taking a moment to think about the things I’m thankful for. About a year and a half ago I was challenged by another blogger to take something called The Gratitude Challenge -I recently re-visited the post and felt it still rang true.
As it seemed quite timely, I thought I might share it again:
I was tagged in a post by the lovely Dee the other day, challenging me to write about something for which I’m grateful.
I’m actually finding this quite difficult. I’m grateful for most things in my life, to be honest. Therefore, choosing one thing to focus on is tough🙂
And I suppose I should be grateful for that, too – that I have such an abundance in my life. Oh, I don’t mean financial or material abundance – though we’re more fortunate than many on this planet in that we have enough to eat and a roof over our heads. I try and see everything that happens to me as an opportunity to learn – when I had a job I hated, I still tried to learn as much as I could about the role, adding to my experience. I also learned which industries I didn’t want to work in, ever again. When a good friend turned her back on our friendship, I learned how wonderful my other friends were as they rallied around me for support. When I lost family members I tried to remember the joy we shared, rather than focusing on the times we would never have again – there was regret, of course there was, at years and opportunities wasted, but it taught me to value the moment and to make the most of it, to make the effort to keep up with family and friends, as you never know how long you might have with them.
Coming to a place in my life where I choose to be thankful for the things I do have, rather than regretting the things I don’t, has taken work. I’m far from perfect and still have my moments where I feel I let myself down. But if we choose to make a conscious process towards appreciating life, rather than shaking our fist at it, then that’s part of the battle won. I’ve had dear friends come into my life who have taught me to appreciate all that I have. These people came to me when I most needed them, even though I didn’t realise it at the time. If all I’d been focusing on was myself and my own sorrow, perhaps I wouldn’t have noticed their arrival.
So I suppose I’m grateful to be alive. I’m grateful for my family and the love that surrounds me. I’m grateful for my friends, for the fact I get to express my creativity every day, for the fact that I can connect with people all around the world with the click of a mouse. I’m grateful I still have the capacity to learn and enjoy new experiences, wherever they may take me. And I’m grateful that I can appreciate it all.
So what are you grateful for?
If you enjoyed this post, you can find me on Twitter @AuthorHelenJ, Facebook, Instagram and Pinterest. Plus my latest release, A Thousand Rooms, is now available on Amazon.
Lovely post Helen, and congratulations on your new release. 🙂
Thanks, Marjorie 🙂 It felt good to get it out there!
Grateful for so much! Family, friends, writing friends. WRITING!!!! OH THE WRITING! and my Mac without which it wouldn’t happen, and maybe my red soled shoes! lol.
Oh, those red soled shoes! I have no idea how you walk in them 😀
And I’m with you, grateful for each and every one of those things, and THE WRITING!!!
Always a good time of year to express gratitude. 🙂
Erm. I meant, any time of year is a good time to be grateful.
Haha! I know what you meant 🙂 And sometimes gratitude is hard to find…
Reblogged this on Suzie Speaks and commented:
I loved this post from Helen – it’s always good to be reminded of what we have…
Thanks so much for sharing, Suzie! It is good to remind ourselves, once in a while 🙂
I loved the optimistic tone of this entry. It made my heart glad, and gave me hope to know that there are still people in the world that have things in perspective.
Aw, thank you – that’s a lovely thing to say. I do try to be optimistic – however it’s tougher at some times than others. Hope life is treating you well x
Well I’m grateful for so many things. I update my gratitude journal every day and it really makes me focus on even the smallest things. So important.
That’s a lovely thing to do 🙂 I also try and express gratitude every day – as you say, even for the smallest things makes a difference. 🙂