Thanksgiving: Focus On Gratitude

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Thanksgiving is this week, and I am going to be honest with you. I’m not feeling very thankful. Things have been a little rough for me lately, and it’s not just the presidential election bumming me out. Every morning my kids head off to school, and I mindlessly go through the motions of my day. I exercise, I eat breakfast, I shower, and I sit down at my desk to work. I am trying to build a business that excites me, but I feel uninspired. I feel like I am desperately yearning to find something, anything to be passionate about, but most days I feel nothing.

Maybe I am still numb from all the changes of the past year, but I feel like I’ve been drowning in a sea of negativity. And it’s not just me. When I go on social media, the general displeasure is palpable. Everyone I know seems to have something to complain about. I absorb all of their negativity, and it simply fuels my bad mood.

If they’re not complaining, their happiness only serves to mock me. Why are they happy when I am not? How is their life perfect? I find myself falling into the trap of comparing myself to another’s appearance of social media perfection. You know, the exact thing I vowed not to do.

I am frustrated with myself, and lately I have been eating my stress and frustration. Thus, starting a vicious cycle. Because we all know that eating bad foods only makes you feel better temporarily, and then it just makes you feel worse. I am very quickly coming to the end of my rope. I have decided that enough is enough. With Thanksgiving just around the corner, something needs to change now.

It’s time to strip things down and begin to build from the bottom up. Now that the Halloween candy is almost gone (Yep! That’s right, we ate all of our candy in less than two weeks!), we are going to detox the entire family. And though I am certain that will help immensely, I know there is much more work to do.

I need to focus on my mental wellbeing, and I need to get back to the basics of gratitude. I figured Thanksgiving would be the perfect time to finally start my daily gratitude journal. I want to spend this upcoming holiday season really focusing on everything I have to be thankful for. Which I know is a lot.

For starters, my husband. I am thankful to have someone who supports me in every way. Our marriage is not perfect, no marriage is. We have fights and struggles like every couple, but ultimately I know that he has my back. He truly only wants me to be happy, and I am grateful for that.

My children. Of course, the most obvious, but also the most important. I am thankful to be a mother to four beautifully goofy, spunky, healthy children. Even on the dreariest day, I can count on a smile or a moment from one of my kiddos to light it up. I am grateful for their love and the opportunity to love them.

This opportunity. Though the road has not been easy, I am extremely thankful to have this opportunity to step back and really figure out what I want. Not too many people can walk away from a paying job to start a business. Not only that, but a business that is still really a work in progress. I am grateful for the time to get it right and truly focus my business in the direction that will make me the happiest and help the most people.

Obviously, this is only the tip of the iceberg. Thanksgiving is only one day of the year, but gratitude should be a daily focus. I need to intentionally choose gratitude every day of my life, and I need to teach my children to do the same. So often in our consumer driven world, we are focused on everything we don’t have. And how the next new thing can fix the emptiness we feel. I want to stop the cycle right now. I am committing to making a change.

What are some things you do to keep gratitude a daily focus in your life?