There’s Always Something To Be Grateful For

It’s important to focus on gratitude as a part of everyday life whether it’s being thankful for someone or something. Relationships are at the top of my list. Family, friends and happy memories are always something to be grateful for. The word gratitude is derived from the Latin word gratia, which means grace, graciousness, or gratefulness.

For the average Lupus sufferer, life can be difficult for many different reasons,  pain and fatigue are the usual offenders. Every day I choose to focus on something positive. My inspiration was a quote by philosopher Epictetus, “A man of sense who does not grieve for what he has not, but rejoices in what he has.” No matter what is going on in my day, I take a few moments to concentrate on simple pleasures like sunshine, a beautiful sunset or a helping hand. I choose joy, to be happy whenever I can. Don’t get me wrong, I have good days and bad days just like everyone else. 

I’ve started writing a gratitude journal. In my research, I came across an older book – Simple Abundance by Sarah Ban Breathnauch. It is a day by day journal type book that helps you focus on the positive. It reminds me to be thankful for those little things we take for granted. Today, I’m grateful for my heating pad and plush blanket on this cold, snowy day! Sometimes I take my journal out to the forest preserve since nature helps me focus and somehow calms my senses. I don’t know if it’s the stillness of the trees or sounds of birds chirping that settles my soul but for one reason or another it works every time. When I meditate or pray, I enjoy early mornings or late afternoons the most. 

Peace, Love and Happiness are my goals. Yes, positive vibes might have started with the hippies but you can do it too, it’s easy. Here are a few tips:

1)Focus on the simple things. 

2) Journal daily. Write down three things you are thankful for. Best times are first thing in the morning, or before you go to bed. 

3) Take a few moments to tell a spouse, partner or friend something you appreciate about them every day. An honest compliment can make someone’s day. 

Gratitude feels good. It’s good for you and for the people around you, a ripple effect occurs. Now can you see the benefits of gratitude? It’s contagious! A positive kind of contagious, not like the flu!

Michele Palermo

Michele is a retired registered nurse who spent 15 years in Emergency Medicine. That's where she learned there's a fragility to life. Diagnosed with lupus, after going through a divorce, taught her to be a survivor instead of a victim. With her career shortened by illness she turned to books. She fell in love with the written word as a young child. To her, words convey emotion. Her new passion is writing. As an aspiring author, she hopes to inspire others on this roller coaster called life.

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