Mindset Mondays with DTK – Ep #144 — Celebrate … Even in 2020

I love the concept, promise, and inevitable impact of the gratitude journal exercise. And yet, I fought it for so long. When I look back at what I captured in my earliest gratitude journal, I’m shocked (not shocked?) by what those entries were. Instead of capturing my actual successes of the day, big or small, so many of those early entries centered around NOT falling short, NOT screwing up, NOT failing. That was not celebrating. That was not gratitude. At best, that was complaining.

“The soul that gives thanks can find comfort in everything;
the soul that complains can find comfort in nothing.”

— Hannah Whitall Smith

Yes, 2020 has been wildly divergent from what we had hoped, completely unlike what we had planned, and certainly far worse than our worst paranoid fantasy. OK, 2020 was a cluster.

And yet, there is SO much for which I can be thankful. My wife and I celebrated our 28th anniversary (7th if you really know us). Our Middlest graduated from college. We enjoyed some amazing connection time with our Middlest and Youngest living at home. My wife and I each published books this year (on the same day). And our Eldest was married last month (and I performed the ceremony). And those are just some of the highlights.

It is all too easy to fall into cataloging the negative: the lost opportunities, the missed events, the lost projects, the postponed initiatives, the stilted economy, the closed businesses, the lost lives. Gratitude for the positive things in our lives does not dishonor or diminish the importance or reality of any of the pain. However, skipping over, dismissing, or failing to own those positive moments guts us of the very energy we need to move through and heal from the negative.

So, as we approach Thanksgiving here in the US, the real question is this:

What is it that you want to celebrate?

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