With Thanksgiving exactly one week away today (eek!) I thought it would be a nice time to introduce Thankful Thursdays! Been thinking about doing something like this for awhile and now seems perfect.
Ok, here’s the deal- we all live, struggle, fail, dust ourselves off, and do the best we can living with anxiety and panic attacks. Some of us are making great strides in our anxiety recovery, and some of us not. On any given day some of us are having good days and some of us are having GREAT days. And of course some of us are having not so great days….
So this is where Thankful Thursday comes in.
Every Thursday, whether you feel like it or not, I want everyone to come up with at least 3 things you are grateful for *today*.
It can be related to something about your anxiety or not. It doesn’t matter. It just has to be something you are thankful for. It would be really cool if you could share your gratitude comments here if you feel so inclined!
Um, Yeah Ok… Why?
Glad you asked! The power of gratitude is *huge*!! Did you know that just by focusing for a few seconds on things you are thankful for you start to feel better? It’s all brain science and it really works. Gratitude fuels happiness and you cannot be happy and panicking at the same time. Books have been written on the power of gratitude.
If you are in a bad space mentally, if you can force yourself to focus on things that you are grateful for- I mean really sit there and focus on it, you will start to feel better. It is called having an attitude of gratitude and it is really cool.
For over 2 years I kept a gratitude journal at my bedside. Every night I made myself write down 5 things I was grateful for. On my bad days, it got me out of my stinking thinking. It forced me to really find positive things about my day. And believe me, there is always something to be grateful for.
On my good days, well it carried me through like I was floating on a cloud! I have 2 notebooks completely full of my nightly gratitude lists and every once in awhile I pull them out and read them. It is really nice!
Since we’re all kind of in this together anyways- doing battle with our thoughts and anxiety weirdness and stuff, why not share some joy too by being grateful? By sharing we can help others who are struggling.
On my darkest days sometimes hearing or reading something nice like this would be enough to make me pull it together and keep going.
So that’s it.. It is *officially* the first Thankful Thursday! I will kick this off with a laundry list of ten count em, 10 things I am thankful for today….
1. I have the heat turned up to 72 degrees (we have a 68 degree rule) and it is so warm and toasty in here. It is freezing outside. I am also sitting here with my feet on a heating pad because they are always cold. So grateful to have heat and to be warm and cozy comfy. Shhh. Don’t worry it will be turned down to 68 by the time everyone gets home later…
2. Tomorrow I have work and I am not freaked out about it. I could be- the last time I was there it was really hard due to all my crazy anxious thoughts and plus I’ve had 3 days off so naturally I think everyone will be tuned in to the new weird girl.
But instead of indulging in this line of thought, I am instead bound and determined to have the best day ever! I am planning to prepare big time for my victory- I will listen to my self hypnosis for panic attacks download several times before heading in, I will re-read some of my very own anxiety tips to remind myself that hey I have done this before and I can do it again! I will ground myself, stay present, and of course offer up a few prayers to the Big Guy in the sky. I’m gonna nail it!
3. I just took a quick break from writing this and ran down to the gym for a class. Well, I got the time mixed up and the class isn’t for another hour. Yay! So I got to go home- I didn’t feel like exercising anyways. Besides, yesterday I did a spin class and I did great! Didn’t have any of that free floating anxiety nonsense like on Monday.
4. I am so grateful for my breakfast! See scary picture. My kids think my food looks like barf and while they’re right,
what they don’t understand is how unbelievably delicious it is. It is cold sliced banana, fresh blueberries, vanilla yogurt and flax seed. Yum-o-Rama! See my enthusiastic thumbs up complete with chipped manicure. Food does make me very, very happy
5. My parents are coming to stay for Thanksgiving next week. They will be staying for 5 full days. While I know how I am and I know I will be stressed before they come, once they are here I will be so giddy with happiness. I always am! I love the holidays no matter how small. It just feels so damn good to be with family that I love.
And speaking of love, my in-laws will also be coming over for Turkey day
with their hands out and not bringing anything as usual and I am going to play nice and not be mean spirited. I promise this to myself. Remember how I said I take a lot of anxiety out on my my husband by being angry? Well you have no idea how much yucky feelings I have held onto about his family over the years. I am determined to be light and airy and gracious to them. Besides they only hang around until the food and booze are gone anyway. I will be nice.
6. I’m grateful my younger daughter started volunteering at the local dog shelter yesterday
because she’s just thoughtful that way because I forced her. She’s going again today and she told me how good she felt walking and playing with those little angels yesterday. 6 adult dogs, one is blind, all are cute and happy as can be. By spending her free time in service to these poor animals, I am hoping this helps her to feel good about herself and feel good about being helpful in general.
7. I am grateful for November. Now that we are well into the month, I have made peace with the passing of the warm weather. I find the chill in the air so invigorating and I love wearing thick warm sweaters. The trees are almost completely bare and the first snow is going to be so so beautiful!! (Well we already had our first storm – a freak one back before Halloween, but that doesn’t count.) I am dreaming about that first light, no shoveling required snowfall that will make the world look like a Christmas card.
8. Yesterday I went out to get a new coat for my husband. He has been wearing a coat with a rip on the side of it for weeks and he looks like a homeless person. I honestly marvel at the fact that this doesn’t seem bother him at all. To me it’s embarrassing so I tried to get him a new coat. Well, I wasn’t able to find what he would like at TJMaxx (because even though he has a hole in his coat he is picky about these things), but I scored a really cute down coat for moi for a steal!
9. I am so grateful that I am getting my hair done at 1:30 today. My grey roots are showing badly and I am also rocking the homeless look over here but definitely not loving it. Since I’ve mastered getting a haircut with anxiety I will be well groomed and de-greyed in just a few hours. It feels good to not look like crap and I’m really looking forward to it
10. I am so grateful that I am making connections with other anxious people through this blog. My readers are AWESOME. It really makes my struggles lighter and the healing process more richer to be able to share about it with people that get it. So wherever you are, I thank you for reading this and I love you all! Well all except the creepy porn sites that try to spam me each and every day no matter what.
Ok friends please tell me what you are grateful for on this first Thankful Thursday!
I wish you peace,