I know what you’re thinking, we’re legit 4 months into 2021, going strong a year + in the middle of a pandemic, with the world someways falling apart. What on earth are you making a gratitude list this early for? After my post in December, it got me thinking more about the things I was happy and grateful for and what I was able to take away from 2020. One of the main things that has kept me in somewhat hope/high spirits, has been to focus on the things I can control, which brings me to this blog post- so, I am choosing to focus on gratitude. Read along with me and see if you agree with me!
Gratitude is the single most important ingredient to living a successful and fulfilled life.Jack Canfield
I don’t know about you, but this pandemic really grounded a number of things in life we simply cannot control. I know that generally speaking we say that we know all these things, but at the end of the day- it doesn’t stop us from trying to control things nonetheless. And although I pride myself in my love for spontaneity, I like having a plan and things to look forward to. Something to be excited about. That being said 2020 definitely helped me hone in on my “letting go” skill, and if you know anything about me- that wasn’t very easy to do. But in some ways, having it taken out of my hands sped up the process. One thing I worked on was essentially focusing on the things I had and not the things I was missing or didn’t have. Shifting my lens and what I was chasing to see.
Health: This was probably at the top of most people’s list; I feel like whether you were directly or indirectly affected by COVID, the mere fact that you are still here- means we should all be grateful. The sheer number of people who have died from this virus is not only daunting, but for me in April 2020, playing the numbers game became overwhelming for me and that was when I stopped listening to the constant string of news. I know to be able to essentially create a bubble for myself is a privilege, but it was what I needed to not feel a strong pressure of impending doom.
Friends: Yes, 2020 took away a hell of a lot of time we would have spent together, but it definitely cemented my friendships and cleared some out. I was able to be a lot more clinical with my energy and time and I was no longer dragging on or feeding relationships which didn’t carry the same amount of effort on both sides. I am no longer doing the chasing- it has to be mutual or it’s a no from me. I had many fun, creative ways of bonding and getting to know my friends more and in different ways. I took part in a virtual writing club, talking on the phone more ( yea…you read that right ), being much more intentional and doing a lot more laughing.
We forget that waking up each day is the first thing we should be grateful for.
Music: I realize this is a kind of interesting one, but I’ve always really enjoyed music as a form of escapism but also as a form of inspiration. If you know me, then you know that I can’t drive without music playing in the car. Music is beyond powerful, be it for activism or for healing a broken heart, it can do wonders. Having music that lifted my spirits, got me dancing and smiling, I was definitely all for it. I can’t tell you the number of dance parties Neveah and I have had in the past year, definitely been grateful we’re on the 1st floor.
Work: Being able to continue working has been a blessing, keeping my mind active but also giving me something to focus on outside of the world falling to bits. My job isn’t one that saves lives, but to be able to do something creative and have targets and all that work encompasses- but also being cognizant of the vast numbers of people who lost their jobs ( at the very start of the pandemic- I was one of those people ). So being able to continue to do so definitely relieves some layers of stress.
Maple & Nutmeg: If you’re unlucky enough to follow me on social media or even to read this blog post, then you’re getting a sneak peek of something I have been working on. For years now, I have wanted to “sell” my creativity ( for lack of a better description ), but for fear of judgement or lack of self-belief- I just didn’t do it. Finally, being home and having a lot of time to reassess and look inward, I asked myself, what was I waiting for? And why not? So, with a lot of deep breaths, some gentle encouragement by my squad, I have taken the plunge and I will be working on my own line of handmade, soy candles. Its name reflects the duality of who I am, Canadian but yet Grenadian. keep you eyes peeled- I’ll share more later, in the meantime- give me a follow over on Instagram, I would definitely love the support!!!
Realistically, for me- practicing gratitude has been a form of self-care, I am able to de-stress and instead of looking at life through a negative lens, I am able to breath, buckle down and look at what I do have. And the reality is, for all that I don’t have, I still have a lot and for all that I would like to do and achieve, I have still come a very long way. Perspective is everything.