Say Thanks (to Yourself!) this Thanksgiving

November 27, 2019

Got gratitude?

Great!

lt’s good to be appreciative for all you have — friends and family and bountiful feasts.

It’s Thanksgiving, the time of year we stuff ourselves with gratitude.

As you think of all the things you are thankful for, do you make the list?

Yes, I mean YOU.

When was the last time you thanked yourself?

If you’re the type of person who is hard on herself, always ruminating or judging her worst moments, maybe it’s time to change the script and add a few word of thanks.

SIX WAYS TO SAY THANKS (TO YOURSELF!)

Thank Yourself for Surviving Your Past

It hasn’t always been easy, but you’ve made it! You have strength and courage and fortitude. No one else has your unique story, the twists and turns and triumphs and challenges that have gotten you here. No one else knows your disappointments and heartaches and lessons learned along the way. Have you felt unlucky? Thank yourself for having gotten on with the getting on of it all. Be grateful for your past which has made you who you are in the present.

“You’ve survived 100% of your bad days, you’ll survive what’s coming.”

Thank Yourself for Your Uniqueness   

There is no one else quite like YOU – your skills, talents, quirks and habits. That’s what makes you special and allows you to have an impact that only you can have on the world. We spend so much time trying to fit in that we forget about the beauty and necessity of standing out. Embrace all of what makes you uniquely you – the good and the bad – and give thanks to yourself for being who you are. You’re here for a reason – to be you. Own your own story!

“In order to be irreplaceable one must always be different.” – Coco Chanel

Thank Yourself for Your Capability to Love and to Be Loved

You’ve made a difference in someone’s life. A child, a parent, a friend, that lady you held the door open for… By just being you, you’ve made an impact. Thank yourself for doing so.  Just as you love and support others, someone else loves and supports you. Maybe they don’t always show it the way you’d like them to. Maybe instead of sending love notes, they clean out the garage. Maybe it’s a significant other, a sibling or your silly dog who acts as if he hasn’t seen you in a week when you return from taking out the trash. Give gratitude not just to those who love you, but to yourself for being lovable.

“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” – Lao Tzu

Thank Yourself for your Ability to Grow

Who you were yesterday is not who you are today, just as who you are today is not necessarily who you’ll be tomorrow. You are not defined by previous limitations or unmet expectations. You’ve grown and evolved from experiences past and can continue to expand and enrich your life through learning, intentional change and embracing all that’s possible. Appreciate your ability to learn and grow and morph and move on from mistakes. Believe in yourself that your best self is still to come.

“Every success story is a tale of constant adaption, revision and change.” – Richard Branson

Thank Yourself for the Future that is Yours to Create

While your past has created your present, it’s the choices in your present that will create your future. You have, at any moment, the ability to say, “This is not how the story ends.” Just as desires change, outdated or unhelpful narratives can be rewritten. Want something different? Make it happen!  Take what you’ve learned and create the plot points necessary to build the next chapter that is yours to own. Your future self with thank you.

“What’s past is prologue.” – William Shakespeare, The Tempest

Thank Yourself for Your Present

They say there’s no time like the present, but there’s also no one else just like YOU in this place and time. Wherever you’ve been and wherever you may go, give a little gratitude – for you – right now. Appreciate who you are, all that you do and all that you are capable of, right now. It’s your gift to yourself.

“Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. That is why it is called the present.” – Alice Morse Earle

Be present in your present.

So, if you haven’t already, give yourself a pat on the back, Patty. Hug yourself, Holly. Value yourself, Valerie (hey, that’s me!)

This Thanksgiving, when you think about all that you are thankful for, you are welcome to thank yourself.

You’ve earned it.

———

Valerie Gordon is a former television producer, a lifelong storyteller and the owner of career and communications strategy firm, Commander-in-She, LLC.  She speaks at conferences about developing a powerful personal narrative and works with corporations to grow future leaders, build strong teams and advance women throughout the organization. 

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