I wanted to take the time to focus on Gratitude because I have learned that gratitude is not just for Thanksgiving! By practising gratitude for myself I have found that it helps pull me out of anxious puddles and reminds me why and how to connect with people IRL.
As an introvert, people watching was more my speed than people interacting. As a kid, I would sit in the window of my mom’s downtown office watching all kinds of people walk past. I was fascinated by how people interacted with one another, how people would act when they thought they were alone in that moment, and my personal favourite was to gauge reactions when we would make eye contact! I would get snarls, waves, smiles or the occasional eye roll. I would make up stories of why they each had their own reaction to me and about where they were going.
Today, you can still find me people watching or “creeping” as my friends would say 😂. But I gotta tell you I have definitely noticed a shift in people’s interactions with one another. I’m guilty of it too, floating around in our own anxious bubbles. Heads down, earbuds in, disconnected from the people right in front of you.
OG Kid Lesson: Only “marriages need work”
New Life Lesson: All relationships need work, even friendships
I gotta say, I am so grateful for all of my relationships. I’ve learned a lot about myself and over time we have grown as people together and TBH that means a lot to me. So, that means I am trying to be more conscious about making better use of my love language of quality time and spending more time with people. Hangs over food talking about new life perspectives, books, philosophies. I want all of that. Thinking of the #kdclivelove philosophy of reconnecting with people simply by being kind. By reaching out and creating time and space for relationships to grow has been so rewarding.
The internet has done amazing things to help an introvert like myself become even more of a recluse! I was falling into that familiar mind game of choosing to stay in and online rather than out with real people. Instead, online is where I have found some of the most real people I have ever met.
I use to be the type that would scroll through IG liking things on the reg but never really commenting. I figured these amazing artists, creators, poets, women, entruphaneours, these people must know how much they are loved! People probably tell them all the time how rad they are already, I don’t need to be another drop in that bucket.
And really, I was scrolling to avoid actual human connection so commenting felt like the thing I was trying to avoid.
And that is the exact problem. With the ease of our screens, we seem to have forgotten what connecting with real people feels like. It’s too often now that we send off a text, an email, a double tap without the consideration of the other person’s perception.
The worst part is we are losing that face to face reaction and interaction.
After noticing my anti-scrolling intentions I decided to change things up. Instead of secretly fangirling I wanted to shout my love for people from the IG rooftops and just let them know that I see them, and I appreciate them.
OG Kid Lesson: Compliments are embarrassing
New Life Lesson: Appreciate the courage it took for that person to say it out loud. Be thankful that they saw me at that moment.
I’m challenging you this week to scroll with purpose. If you see something you like, do more than just a double tap. By reaching out you are letting another person know that they aren’t alone and you have found something that connects you.
If you are feeling brave and want to take this challenge further, try it in person with someone IRL. A simple compliment will do. We are all out there fighting our own battles, it is nice to be reminded that we are seen and appreciated.
Remember, we don’t need more asshole energy in the world. Check yours! We should be lifting each other up and showing kindness instead.
If you’re thankful or inspired by someone, it means a lot when you say that shit out loud.
Gratitude doesn’t always have to be about people either. I can spend a lot of time in my head and the pattern is that when thinking in the past there is only regret, and when thinking in the future, it’s only filled with worry. Hands up if that makes sense to you!
When I focus on right now I have shifted my mind to think of gratitude first. Sometimes this moment is enough to be thankful for.
I’ve been trying to pay attention to the exact moments I feel happy, annoyed, quick to judge, frustrated, excited, loved. I ask myself Self, why is this thought or feeling the first thing that comes to mind? Let’s learn from this moment and be thankful for what is to come.
I need to make sure to feel all the feelings and to learn from them. When I find myself in a shit storm, aka an anxious puddle by knowing and understanding my reactions I can steer myself back in the right direction faster.
There is always a lot that is unknown while we live our lives every day. The only thing I know for sure is that I control my thoughts, feelings, intentions and reactions – bottom line I can only control myself and I’m going to always try to find that silver lining.
Is gratitude something you practice? How do you make space for it in your life?
If you need to read more about why I choose Gratitude, read that here.
If you need a reminder on the importance of Self Care, read that here