Before people rush to the mall for Black Friday deals or start trimming their trees with lights and ornaments, let’s all appreciate this day and take time to be grateful for all of the beautiful people, things, and experiences in our lives. Have you ever noticed how much better you feel after you sit back and appreciate how lucky or ‘blessed’ you are? The other evening I was sitting in bed stressing out about finding a job and making money and not having enough Instagram followers and people being flaky and blah blah blah…and as I sometimes do when I’m feeling overwhelmed, I reached for my journal to scribble down a few thoughts. But then I started reading my journal instead. I ended up reading it from the very first entry to the most recent and it made me stop and appreciate so much.
First, I felt tremendous self gratitude. I remember when I was a kid re-reading my old diary entires and thinking, “man, was I dumb.” But that wasn’t the case this time around. Instead, I was appreciative that I had taken the time to write down my thoughts. I was proud of myself for writing when I was sad or down and I was impressed by my own insight, as well as the underlying note of positivity that accompanied each entry. I was touched by my empathy and my desire to spread goodness. I was invigorated reading about the trips I had taken. I felt warm and fuzzy reading about the times I had shared with friends, both old and new.
It was a marvelous feeling and I decided to build on the momentum and jot down a list of things I was grateful for. The list could have gone on and on but I kept it pretty short and sweet. Here goes:
- Myself. For all of the reasons listed above. Loving yourself, taking pride in your accomplishments, and self-acceptance are wonderful feelings.
- Chicago. I feel inspired by this amazing city every single day.
- My family. I am so thankful that I have a family full of people who also feel like friends. This year, I’m especially thankful that I live just a short drive from my mom and pop, and I’m also extra thankful for my Chicago family (Tom, Betty, and Maria) for welcoming me into their house with open arms and making me feel right at home.
- Friends, both old and new. I know I’ve said this before in a previous post but I am so grateful for all of my strong female friendships. Most of my very best friends are people I’ve known since middle or high school. I’m also so happy to have made so many new friends in Chicago! I’m excited each day just knowing there’s a world of people out there…remember, everyone’s a stranger until they’re a friend!
I hope you all have a wonderful day off. Whether you spend it with friends, family, or even alone, I hope you feel loved, appreciated, and grateful.