2021…… What. A. Year.
It’s hard to believe that the end of 2021 is upon us. COVID-19 has brought truly unprecedented times that no one could imagine. Seemingly overnight, the world as we knew it changed. Age, wealth, race, religion, politics and all the things that make us who we are as individuals seem to matter less and the fact that we are all human and in this world together, matters more.
Almost 2 years into a pandemic, looking forward to 2022 amidst more fear of the unknown and more uncertainty can seem daunting. Despite this, within each of us is a deep, untapped reservoir of resilience that continues to help us survive and thrive during and after this pandemic.
Life will not be the same because life never is the same. Our lives are in a constant, dynamic state of change. Yet our remarkable ability to adapt makes most challenges and changes barely noticeable. If we think about it….you, me and everyone has experienced and survived some challenge. All of us have experienced and moved through difficulties– the death of a loved one, conflict in a relationship, illness, pain, job disappointments and fear. The truth is, we were resilient long before COVID-19 came along. Not only will we continue to figure this out, we will adapt, survive and ultimately thrive. How? Through gratitude.
Gratitude practices can not only help us overcome stress, they can also help us better manage hardships or challenges that come our way. Building emotional resilience is about control and perspective.
Creating a gratitude practice allows us to stop and reflect on the good instead of overlooking it. It enables us to pause and create space between our impulses and actions. Within this space, we are allowed the ability to choose. It gives us the control and perspective needed to make the correct decisions, while dealing with challenging situations.
Keep a gratitude journal. Make it a habit to write down your blessings and thoughts about the daily gifts you’ve received.
Count your blessings. Pick a time every week to write and reflect on the good things that happened during the week. Choose three to five things to identify each week. As you write, think about how you felt when that blessing came to you.
We cannot control everything that happens to us, but we can control our responses. Let’s count our blessings and shift our perspectives. Building resilience happens by making choices, one challenge at a time.
New Year’s Prayer of Gratitude
May today there be peace within.
May you trust that you are exactly where you are meant to be.
May you not forget the infinite possibilities that are born of faith in yourself and others.
May you use the gifts that you have received, and pass on the love that has been given to you.
May you be content with yourself just the way you are.
Let this knowledge settle into your bones and allow your soul the freedom to sing, dance, praise and love.
With gratitude and love,
Michigan Associates of Acupuncture and Integrative Medicine