The meaning of being grateful when we already have so much
Hey everyone, Courtney here! Thanksgiving is here in the US (and already passed for our Canadian friends) and so I'm sure you've been flooded with articles about being Thankful and might think it's all kinda corny.
Well, here's another one of those articles ;)
I think it is the perfect time to reflect on what I am grateful for because truthfully I don't do it enough. We too often get caught up in the nitty-gritty business of daily life and it doesn't leave us with much time to focus on the positive. And we should!
Don't just take my word for it. Numerous studies have shown that "Gratitude helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, improve their health, deal with adversity, and build strong relationships" That sounds pretty good to me.
So what am I grateful for?
I am grateful for me being me. WHA?? No, I'm serious. I get to be the person I truly am. There are so many people who have to hide their true selves for many different reasons. The fact that I can live the way I want, with whom I want, where I want, and how I want is amazing and something I am truly grateful for.
I've had great successes and equally awful failures but they are all mine, choices freely made. I am grateful for the freedoms I possess. This blog would not exist if not for the freedom that Steve and I have to decide what our dreams are, what we want our life to look like, and to follow through. Being free to do something doesn't mean it's easy, but it's our challenge to conquer.
I am grateful for my family, my husband and the relationship we have, my pups who make me so very happy, my parents who have given and continue to give me more than I can say, my siblings for being supportive, my friends for always being there, my colleagues for keeping me grounded and last but certainly not least for all of you in our FI community who provide inspiration and motivation each and everyday.
I am grateful for ALL the things. We have too much stuff and are slowly remedying that through yard sales, Good Will and our eventual crazy sale of almost everything we own so we can move into our Airstream. Most of the time I look at our stuff as a hassle, a time commitment, a mistake, or another to-do item. But I am still grateful for each and every thing we own.
I have someplace warm and safe for myself and my family to sleep every night, food to eat, clothes to wear, running water to wash with. Granted, I also have boxes of useless decor but I am grateful for the fact that buying or receiving it at some point gave me joy and I'm grateful again that I can now give it away to someone else who will enjoy it more.
I am grateful that Steve and I have broken free of the the 'societal stuff trap' and no longer want or need to surround ourselves with things in order to feel secure.
I am grateful for my continual learning and growing. I am learning new things daily and often changing the way I live my life to reflect what I've learned. My understanding of life, happiness, and love continues to expand. There are so many things that make me happy today that I probably wouldn't have even noticed a couple of years ago.
By continually growing I've been able to sweat less of the small stuff, or in my husband's words, give A LOT fewer fucks (though he is still much better at this than me) about the little things that truly don't matter - and my life is more content because of it.
I am grateful for the internet. A lot of negativity and hate can be spread through social channels on the internet but so can hope, and health, and new ideas, and old reminders, and joy, and peace, and friendship, and love.
I am grateful for my health and the health of my family. We have numerous semi-serious medical issues in our families but overall everyone is healthy. Steve and I prioritize our health. We are probably the most healthy fitness and diet wise than we have ever been in our entire lives, and we feel it. We get plenty of sleep, eat a diet rich in nutrients (yay plant based!) and exercise almost daily (more than daily for Steve). I've even begun tackling my migraine issues and actually I am grateful for them. My migraines have taught me how much control I have over how I feel. So many people pop pills for maladies that they are choosing to inflict upon themselves.
This year, I have learned that dairy and gluten cause me a massive amount of inflammation which leads to my migraines. Alcohol and sugar too. I grateful for the knowledge of how to feel like my best self and the opportunity to continue learning so hopefully one day my diet makes me feel the very best I can.
There are so many other things I cam grateful for but I will end with Nature. I am grateful to be alive and to exist on this planet with sunrises, bird songs, tiny plant sprouts, massive trees, magnificent mountains, soothing rivers, crashing waves, blowing winds, echoing calls, silent snow falls, crackling fires, stunning sunsets, and glorious starry skies.
O and pie. Definitely grateful for pie.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone!