A Study in Gratitude

June 7th, 2012

At my son’s commencement, the headmaster talked about a recent study in which a group of kids were asked to spend five

Time to kick back and enjoy the summer!

minutes a day making a list of things they were grateful for. Six weeks later, these kids were apparently doing better in school, growing closer to their friends and families, and feeling more optimistic about the future than the kids in the control group who didn’t take those five minutes to reflect.  What really got to me though, was when my son said he’d heard about a similar study with adults, in which they wrote down three things they were grateful for at bedtime each night and improved their sleep. Hell, I’ve followed far more spurious advice in my battle against the ole demon insomnia.  So here I go, listing things I’m grateful for.  Look for a better-rested me in just a few short weeks–or your money back!

Note: let’s take the biggies as givens, okay?  I’m not going to bore you by rhapsodizing about how grateful I am for my family, home, food to eat, etc–just assume I’ve listed all that obvious stuff and let’s go on from there.

1.  I’m grateful that I get to work at home so I’m never far from a freezer bag full of Krispy Kreme donuts (which can be warmed up in a microwave until they’re soft and melty) and my own bathroom.

2.  I’m grateful that the cat seems to have stopped peeing on the bottom shelf of the bookcase where I keep copies of my own books.  (If you’re someone who has ever received a book from me, just assume that yours was NOT off the bottom shelf.  We’ll both feel better.)

3.  I’m grateful I get to be in charge of the supermarket shopping here, because I can buy anything I want  without having to beg someone else for it.

4.  I’m grateful I get to read books purely for pleasure now and not because someone assigned them.

5.  I’m grateful that Spanx exist.

6.  I’m grateful that Jezebel exists.

7.  I’m grateful that I’m not so tall that people constantly say things like, “Wow, you’re a tall one, aren’t you?” and I’m not so short that people say, “Aren’t you adorable?”

8.  I’m grateful that all my kids have been old enough to wipe themselves for quite some time now.

9.  I’m grateful that I’m young enough that I can still wipe myself.

10.  I’m grateful that today is the last day of school and we start summer vacation tomorrow!  WOO-HOO!

(PS: I’m taking a couple of weeks off.  Don’t miss me too much and keep reading!)

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