Counting Your Blessings

cherylIt’s Thanksgiving time. What a wonderful time of the year. Our temperatures are below 90 degrees, we see fall colors in some remote spots, we are still reliving that great feeling we had watching the Houston Astros win the world championship,

and are still on the roller coaster of being a Texans fan. Oh, that’s right: my blog was going to be about counting our blessings. For Houstonians, we better leave out the National Football league.

I just gave a perfect example of how we can let our train of thought go quickly from the positive to the negative. When that happens, it becomes an emotional death spiral that is hard to stop. So let’s focus on the positive this Thanksgiving season and count our blessings.

America
For all of its short comings, I still believe America is the best country in the world in which to live. I rarely watch the Oprah Show, but one day when I did, I remember her saying, “For a woman, America is the best country in which to be born.” Most of us are aware of the struggles she had to overcome to be successful, and that success just would not happen in many places.

The Big Five
I am referring to our five senses. Many of us can be thankful that we can smell that turkey roasting in the oven, see the way the leaves are changing colors, hear the laughter of our family and friends around the dining table, taste the pumpkin pie, and give our loved ones a great big hug. Ask anyone challenged in any of these five sense areas, and you can be thankful your challenges are not the same.

A Teacher
I love the bumper sticker, “If you can read this…thank a teacher.” There is a good chance that somewhere along the line, there was at least one teacher who helped you learn something. Perhaps it was reading, or math, or maybe it was opening the door to a world of new things. Perhaps your teacher was in the formal setting of a school, or maybe it was a person without a title who taught you. Doesn’t matter, the important thing is that you learned.

Other Blessings
I’ve purposely stayed away from mentioning some of the obvious blessings that come quickly to mind, like home, food, etc. Never leave them off the list, but try stretching yourself. Think of a blessing for every letter of the alphabet. Letter Z? I am thankful I can visit a lion in the zoo and not have to go to Africa to see one, or meet one on the street. Get the idea?

So, in the words of a song, written even before my time, “If you get tired and you can’t sleep, try counting blessings instead of sheep. And you’ll fall to sleep, counting your blessings.”

Cheryl Sandifer is a former Regional Facilitator with Workforce Solutions. In that role she was able to apply her knowledge and experience as both an educator and social worker to conduct job search skills seminars throughout the Houston-Galveston area. She had opportunity to work with those ranging from entry-level to C-level to help them find a job, keep a job, or get a better job.

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