The Difference Between Being Thankful And Being Grateful

The Difference Between Being Thankful And Being Grateful

Being thankful is a feeling; being grateful is an action.
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As the name denotes, Thanksgiving is a holiday dedicated to the focus of being thankful. This time of year gives us that warm, fuzzy feeling. We have a few days where we feel generally thankful for the wonderful things our lives include. Sounds great, right?

I'm gonna call bull on this one.

The Oxford Dictionary defines the work "thankful" as "pleased and relieved." Both of those things are great feelings. I can't think of anyone who doesn't want to feel pleased and relieved. But that's just it; they're feelings.

The Oxford Dictionary defines the work "grateful" as "showing an appreciation of kindness." This where the difference lies; being thankful is a feeling. Being grateful is an action.

It's easy for us to look around the Thanksgiving dinner table and say that we are thankful. We're surrounded by family, friends, and food. In that time, we're currently experiencing that fuzzy feeling that comes with a holiday gathering. We wait for that one time a year in which we can focus on that thankful feeling. But where is the practice of that thankfulness? Where do we draw the line between a shallow feeling and an intentional way of life?

Gratitude is when we dwell on more than just the feeling of thankfulness. Thankfulness is the first step. We have to have that initial feeling to build upon, and we build upon it by redirecting our focus onto making gratefulness a steady part of our lives, 365 days a year.

But our lives are busy. They distract us from remembering the important things. We get so caught up in our school work, our day jobs, our relationship issues, our bills, and our responsibilities that we forget to shift our perspective on a regular basis. I know that there aren't many of us who each day dwell on how blessed and lucky we are to have the lives that we do.

So how do we actually gain that perspective and keep it all year round?

The key is keeping gratitude at the forefront of our lives. It's not just thinking about how thankful we are to have what we do. It's about living out that gratitude through the simple things we do every day. When we gear our minds towards focusing on how privileged we are, it makes it easier for us to want to bless the other people in our lives. Gratitude is what prompts you to pay for a stranger's coffee; because you recognize your own financial blessings and see that you can help another person out, maybe redirecting the tone of their day. It's what prompts you to remind your loved ones how important they are to you. It's what encourages you at the end of a long, hard day, because you know that it's actually been a far better day than you've made it out to be.

Being thankful is awesome. Being grateful is even more awesome. Remind yourself of it every day in the upcoming year, and you'll find that the next Thanksgiving isn't all too different from every other day.

Cover Image Credit: google

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22 New Things That I Want To Try Now That I'm 22

A bucket list for my 22nd year.

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"I don't know about you but I'm feelin' 22," I have waited 6 long years to sing that and actually be 22! Now 22 doesn't seem like a big deal to people because you can't do anything that you couldn't do before and you're still super young. But I'm determined to make my 22nd year a year filled with new adventures and new experiences. So here's to 22.

1. Go sky diving.

What's crazier than jumping out of a plane? (Although I'll probably try indoor skydiving first.)

2. Go cliff jumping/diving.

I must be the only Rhode Islander who hasn't gone to Jamestown and jumped off a cliff.

3. Ride in a hot air balloon.

Up, up and away.

4. Try out skiing.

Cash me in the next Olympics, how bout dat.

5. Try out snow boarding.

Shawn White, I'm coming for you.

6. Go bungee jumping.

Because at least this time I'll be attached to something.

7. Go to Portugal.

I mean I'm Portuguese so I have to go at some point, right?

8. Go to Cape Verde.

Once again, I'm Cape Verdean so I have to go.

9. Vist one of the seven wonders of the world.

I mean hey, Egypt's on, my bucket list.

10. Try out surfing.

It's only natural that somebody from the Ocean State knows how to surf.

11. Learn a new langauge.

Because my little bit of Portuguese, Spanish and Latin isn't cutting it anymore.

12. Travel to a state that I've never been to before.

Fun fact: I've only been to 17 of the 50 states.

13. Go paddle boarding.

Pretty boring but I've never done it.

14. Go scuba diving.

I'm from the Ocean State so I guess I should see the ocean up close and personal.

15. Learn how to line dance.

There's actually a barn in my state that does line dancing, so this one will definitely get crossed off.

16. Go kayaking.

All this water around me and I haven't done a lot of the water activites.

17. Stay the night in a haunted hotel room.

I bet if I got my friends to come with me, it would be like the Suite Life of Zach and Cody episode, minus the ghost coming out of the wall but you never know.

18. Get my palms read.

Because who doesn't want to know their future.

19. Go to a medium.

Like a medium that can communicate with people that have died.

20. Take a helicopter ride.

Air plane: check Helicopter:....

21. Sleep under the stars.

Because sleeping in a tent is more like glamping than camping

22. Just to try new things in my everyday life.

Whether it's trying a new restaurant, getting something different at my usual restaurants, changing my usual style, going on the scary rides at amusement parks, and bringing things I used to do back into my life now.

Cover Image Credit:

Author's illustration

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Life Lessons We Learn From 7 Different Elements On The Beach

Sandcastles are never easy to build. It takes strategy, focus, and time to create these wonderful structures of the sand.

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The beach is a wonderful thing. Personally, I am a huge beachgoer and I enjoy my time sitting in the sun, playing in the waves, and letting the sand run through my toes on a walk along the shore. The beach exemplifies lessons of strength and confidence that we all need to keep in mind.

1. Sand

The sand that extends vastly throughout the beach can teach us all lessons. On the outside, the sand seems like one mass that is held together, but it is truly comprised of the tiniest grains from rocks. Everyone has their smalls weaknesses, and we must keep those weaknesses in mind to learn and grow as humans. All of these small vulnerabilities can make you stronger like the vast sands of the beach.

2. Ocean waves

We are all faced with hardships that make us feel like we reach the peak of our emotions, and we want to crash and break. If you ever feel as if you will crash, take a lesson from the ocean's waves. Enter any situation with force and strength. Even if you fall down, pull yourself back together with all your might. The waves are an endless cycle. Be like this. Do not give up after falling down. Even if you come back with a little less strength, start over again.

3. Rocks

The strong rocks that sit by the shore are a wonder. After all of the waves that crash on them, they are stationary. Likewise, others may try to pull mischief behind your back. There are always going to be people who feel better by bringing others down. These people may try to mess with you, but stay still and do not be afraid.

4. Planes carrying advertisements

Make yourself known like an advertisement that flies in the wind. Some may not pay attention, and others may not even bother to look. However, showing who you are and what you stand for is important. Let your opinions be known.

5. Sun bathers

Some beachgoers may wear the same style of bathing suit, yet the colors and patterns may be unique. Showcase your unique style to others and do not be afraid of who you are. No matter the body type, everyone on the beach showcases who they are. Do not be ashamed of yourself; everyone is made differently and beautifully.

6. Lifeguards

Lifeguards are always on duty and they are always watching your back. They would never let someone be in harm's way. No matter how lonely you may feel in life, there is always someone watching your back. They will make sure you are safe.

7. Sandcastle

Sandcastles are never easy to build. It takes strategy, focus, and time to create these wonderful structures of the sand. In life, some of the best things take time also. Do not be discouraged if you fall apart while building yourself up. If you are patient, you will watch a beautiful structure be built up. You too must wait to watch yourself bloom. The best things come to those who wait.

Stand tall, have strength and confidence, and enjoy your time. It takes time for any human to build themselves up. Do not be afraid to fall down. Only pull yourself together with strength. The best things in life truly take time, so have patience.

Cover Image Credit:

Erica Wriedt

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