Choosing to Be Grateful

In this gloomy weather I find that having an attitude of gratitude imbues my life with hope for the future.

Every other day I write down 5 things I’m grateful for in my grateful journal.

It’s a hardbound spiral journal that I write entries in.

First I reread the last two or three selections. Then I write a new entry.

A research study reveals that keeping a grateful journal can help a person ward off blue feelings. It might have even halted people from being depressed.

Gathering around the Thanksgiving or other holiday table  you’re bound to interact with people that don’t share your worldview.

I’ve found that the remedy is keep my cool and talk about other things.

I’m too jaded to think that anyone in our government–not Liberal Democrat Republican or Conservative–can help ordinary Americans and do the right thing for everyone on the planet as well.

The part of Thanksgiving that I can accept celebrating is the “giving thanks” part of the holiday.

I’m grateful to be happy and healthy and healed. I’m grateful for every experience I’ve had–good and not-so-good. I’m grateful for everyone I’ve met along the way in my life.

One change–it could be called the fourth changeover–had the most impact on my happiness.

In recent months I’ve been able to make peace with reality and to make peace with other people.

What I’m able to do now is to understand that there’s no “right” or “wrong.”

I am who I am. You are who you are. Others are who they are.

The goal as I see it is to give each other a wide latitude to express ourselves.

What alarms me is that there are people who think the government can actually help them. They have fixed beliefs about Mr. Toupee and about everyone else who has been elected to serve us.

So–they sharpen their knives and cut you to pieces along with the turkey.

I turn 55 soon. The older I get I’ve come to believe that compassion is called for.

We must have compassion for the haters, for those who are less fortunate, for people who have done us wrong, for ourselves if we feel poorly about something we did.

Having compassion for others who don’t think, believe, act, live, and identify the same way you do is what’s needed in this often sad and angry society we live in.

My therapist is fond of saying that everyone being different makes the world interesting.

I’m grateful that there’s no other person like me walking down the street.

And yes–I’m grateful to live in America in a city where I’m free to walk down that street.

Those of us who benefit in the world should be doing things to help people who haven’t had any advantage.

This is the message I bring to you in this season:

Choose to love. Choose to be grateful. Choose to do your own thing without fear.

 

 

Author: Chris Bruni

Christina Bruni is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Left of the Dial. She contributed a chapter "Recovery is Within Reach" to Benessere Psicologico: Contemporary Thought on Italian American Mental Health. As well as an author and activist, Bruni is an artist and athlete.

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