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Gratitude Challenge

By Terrie James/Hempstead Cooperative Extension Service, 11/1/21 1:37 PM

When you think about the month of November, what comes to mind? I think most people are thinking about the upcoming holiday of Thanksgiving. Some look forward to it and other year- end holidays while some people do not. Greetings this is Terrie James, Hempstead Co. Extension Family and Consumer Sciences Agent with your Extension Education update.

Whether you look forward to the November and December holiday season or not, it can be a hectic and challenging or sad and disappointing time in a person’s life. How can we cheer up and feel better during the holiday season regardless of life’s difficulties especially since managing the COVID pandemic is still with us?

We can practice gratitude. We may not feel grateful, but we can choose to be grateful. We even have a national holiday that focuses on Gratefulness-Thanksgiving!

Each week in November my articles will focus on a gratitude challenge created by Daryl Chen, the Ideas Editor at TED from the presentations of five TED Talks speakers.

Challenge #1: Take a photo every day of something you’re thankful for. The speaker of this talk was advised by a counselor to take 10 minutes at the end of every to reflect on the things she was grateful for and write them down. This activity led her to notice moments and objects she would have otherwise missed. At the end of 10 days, the speaker decided to continue for a year, but with a twist. She decided to take a photo of what she was grateful for that day. It could be objects or people.

Amazingly, when she zoomed in to take the photo, she found herself looking beyond her preconceptions and stale stories. Instead of taking people and things for granted, she developed a new appreciation for people and objects in her life. She noticed more which caused her to be grateful.

So, practice gratitude this week and take a photo of what you’re thankful for daily. Feeling down or stressed, look at your photos! Have a wonderful Fall and take care of yourself.