How To Be Thankful When 2020 F$^%& Sucks

A week of gratitude when 2020 has been the s#!% show we never expected?

By: Julia Childs
How To Be Thankful When 2020 F$^%& Sucks

A week of gratitude when 2020 has been the s#!% show we never expected? Listen, we’re reading the room, and we’ll be honest: We feel you. We also recognize that if not now, when? The beauty of 2020 is that it helped us collectively grow our resilience. With all the pain, grief, and turmoil this year brought, it is as if the clouds are parting just a bit. Maybe it is that 2021 is nearly upon us, and there’s a (potentially naive) hope that as the clock strikes midnight, 2020 and all of its drama will disappear into the abyss. Or, maybe it is that we’ve realized that we may have lost a lot this year, but we are still standing, somehow. As we head into the final months of the year, we’re going to explore how we can practice gratitude in spite of it all. 

Develop a Gratitude Practice

Gratitude lists are popular for a reason — they work. Setting aside time daily to reflect on what you’re grateful for can lead to a significant shift in perception. Gratitude lists don’t have to be filled with 20 items to matter, either. Even if you get just one thing you’re grateful for onto paper, that can be all the victory needed for the day. Have trouble committing to a daily practice? Bring some loved ones into the mix. Start an email chain with five different loved ones and email a gratitude list out every morning. Gratitude breeds gratitude, meaning you may be inspired to reflect on what you’re thankful for after you read your best friend’s take.

journal on joy respin

Cultivate Joy

Joy isn’t a state of being we blindly stumble into. Instead, joy is a way of existence we create on our own. This year reminded us that we might be waiting for a very long time if we wait for joy to be. Leaning into the present moment is the first step in cultivating joy. When in doubt, reach for your toolbox. We created A Journal on Joy for moments just like this. Designed to be a vessel for warmth and levity, it is filled with prompts to cultivate a sense of joy on a daily basis. 

Tell Someone You Love Them — Often

We all could use a little bit more love. Coupled or not, there’s a need for more TLC than ever these days. Spread love and see how your gratitude grows. Commit to telling someone you love them every day for 30 days. Maybe it is texting your mom more or perhaps reaching out to your sibling. Whatever it may be, we know that expressing appreciation for those closest to you is a definitive route to increasing your gratitude.

Up Your Support Team

There’s no shame in reaching out for support. You may have friends and family, but nothing replaces the support of a trained psychotherapist. Sometimes we just need someone to carry the load with us. Not sure where to start? We’ve compiled some resources for you here.


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