Thanksgiving is not only a time to get hype about the mashed potatoes grandma makes or the turkey that you think about all year long but it really is about the time we take out of our hectic schedules to spend time with our families. No, I am not saying that food and football are not important in times like these but we should be thankful for the opportunity to have a turkey on the table and a TV screen to watch. Believe it or not, not everyone has it made! Here some tips on how I like to take the time to realize how grateful I am for EVERYTHING, yes, even myself.


1. Make a list of the things you like about yourself

Stop looking in the mirror and picking out the things that could be better! You are always going to believe there can be better, you could get everything you want and I promise you, you would still want to be "better". BE HAPPY WITH WHAT YOU SEE. Write down a list of things you love about your body, face, etc. FOCUS on those things. We are so lucky to have the eyesight to be able to see how beautiful we are and the beauty of the world. Remember that next time you look in the mirror, having the ability to see is a beautiful thing.

2. Take the time to "thank" your family

Honestly, we are college kids, who has the money to buy food and pay the cable bill?! Unless you are working your ass off, NO ONE (kudos to you if you make it happen). It is not even about saying the words "Thank you". It is about doing your part and helping in any way you can! It is so easy, ask your parents what you can do to help, you have no idea how your actions can be recognized as deserving in a much more meaningful way than any "Thanks mom and dad" could ever take you. Not to mention, your family has shaped you into the person you are today! Sure, we are all confused and lost on "who we want to be" but I swear to you no one molds you more than them no matter who you want to be or end up being, and that is a sacrifice that they make to make you better and it needs to be noticed and appreciated.

P.S. Don't ever forget about your perfect little furball. Our pets just want to make us happy and love us, that's it! Even in times when they may cause trouble, they still get us to cuddle with them at the end of the night. Show your pet some extra love this holiday.

3. Whatever your "thing" is

I get it, I don't know you or your situation, but I do know this. No matter what living situation each of us are in, there is always SOMETHING we turn to. Music, gaming, shows, books, sports; there is YOUR THING that you have and that you love and you spend a lot, if not all, your time with! Understand that without that, you would not be you and you would not have that thing to make you HAPPY. Appreciate that thing your into. Be thankful for it.

4. Your friends play a huge role in your life, treat them well

Let's get real, in our 20's our friends are our ENTIRE WORLD! Yes, family is so important but friends are our family and play a huge role in our lives and in learning in ways we want to start forming and creating our own family traditions in the future. BE GRATEFUL for those awesome pals! They have been with you through time when your family may not have been the best choice for support (we've all been there) and they will always have your back. Friends keep us sane and allow us to have special people to grow along with, in this life, it is so important to look to those friends for guidance and happiness because NO ONE KNOWS WHAT THEY'RE DOING. Show your friends how much they mean to you with just a simple I love you text! Get together with them over the holidays.

Realize....

Doing these things are just a few ways I like to stay grounded. Small steps like these can first, change your everyday perspective to a positive state, then your life will follow suit. Life is not out to get you, but it is not going to hand you gold and roses, you have to WORK for the things you desire! Being happy is a choice, make that choice every chance you get. Being grateful for even the smallest thing God has granted you is the first challenge you must take on before you can achieve happiness. Life is always going to challenge you and that's something to be grateful for because it wants to push you to be better! Go get it.