So, let me tell you a story. I woke up this morning feeling great. I haven’t felt my best over the past couple of days, but last night I got a great sleep – and I woke up this morning happy, and eager to get the day started.
Our kitty cat deciding to sit on my dressing table and watch me get ready helped too. ❤
I headed out of our apartment, on time, and caught my regular bus, where I was pleasantly surprised by how empty it was. Usually it’s quite busy, but today there was maybe 8 people on the entire bus. I thought to myself, “This is a great sign! It’s going to be a great day! Or, as Tony the Tiger would say…a grrrrrrreat day!”
That feeling didn’t last too long though. As I walked from the bus down to the subway platform, I was greeted by hundreds, if not thousands, of other commuters.
Due to “signal delays,” trains were backed up created a “stuffed like sardines in a can” effect on the platform. Everyone was agitated and annoyed. Everyone was pushing and elbowing their way through the crowds in an attempt to get onto the trains. Already jam-packed trains pulled in, very few people got off of the subway – leaving little to no room for anyone new board. Then, if you were lucky enough to board – you were squished in with everyone else – hoping and praying that you or your belongings wouldn’t interfere with the door and cause even more delays.
All of this resulted in me being 30 minutes late for work. I’m sure others were even more late, and thankfully – I was able to let my coworkers know the situation while stuck on the subway platform.
Now, I’m not going to lie – this whole “adventure” was not pleasant. It was stressful AF and triggered my anxiety instantly. The crowds, the pushing, the lack of air ventilation, the aggressive people…it was a lot to handle.
As I was squished between people on the train, I caught myself feeling sorry for myself. Woe is me. Poor JennJenn, stuck in this commuters nightmare.
Then I stopped myself. I’m trying this new (to me) thing where once I catch myself thinking in a negative way, I stop. I am trying to change the way I think and approach situations. Instead of saying to myself, “I can’t believe I had to let 3 subway trains go by before I could board an already full car,” I thought to myself, “Wow, I’m lucky I was able to board this subway car. I’m lucky I’ll actually get to work today and that my bosses are understanding of this delay.”
Instead of feeling sorry for myself, or angry at a situation that was completely out of my control – I instead thought of things I was grateful for.
That seemingly simple (but believe me, it’s much easier said than done) change in my train of thought instantly changed my outlook and mood. Once I finally exited the subway station at my destination, I got upstairs – walked outside and stopped for a moment. I took a minute to appreciate the sun shining down on my face, and decided to treat myself to a chocolate milk.
So often we get caught in the habit of being negative. Negative emotions like worry, doubt, even complaining – those most often take center stage. How often do you find yourself feeling grateful for something? How often do you think of the glass as half-full, and not half-empty?The energy you emit is the energy you will attract. The power of positivity is undeniable. Click To Tweet
I truly believe this.
Today is August 10th. There are 21 more days in the glorious month of August.
Side note: can you believe it’s already August?! 2017 is FLYING by!
Anyways, for the next 21 days, I’m challenging myself (and you, if you’re into it!) to a 21 day gratitude challenge. I’ve read about a few of these, but the one I am presenting myself (and you) is simple.
At least once a day, for the next 21 days, take a moment to write down something you are grateful for that day. It could be as simple as getting the last sprinkle donut available at your local Tim Horton’s, or it could be something more personal like being grateful that your family member beat whatever illness they were fighting. Really, it’s up to you. It’s your life, and you get to choose what you are grateful for each day.
Personally, I’m going to share mine on social media, but I’m also going to create a grateful jar. I’m going to pick up a mason jar and some bright colour note pads – and every day I’m going to write down what I am grateful for. I’ll fold it up and place it in the jar.
I’m aiming to stick to this challenge for at least the next 21 days…but ideally, I want to make this a daily habit. Practicing daily gratitude is a positive shift in my train of thought, and will have a positive effect on every aspect of my life – including my mental health.
I encourage you to join along and share your journey with me! Let me know in the comments if you’re going to try your hand at the 21 day gratitude challenge so I can follow along!
To start out my personal 21 day gratitude challenge – today I am grateful for all of you. I am grateful to have this platform to share on, and I am grateful to have each and every one of you amazing readers who encourage met to keep sharing every day!