12 Months of Gratitude: September

29.09.2018

September has been a month of ups and downs for me. There were a few weeks where I felt overwhelmed and a bit hopeless, but then there were some weeks where I felt really optimistic and content.

I managed to get out and about a lot more this month and really push myself out of my comfort zone. I also had my last therapy session and I feel like I’ve put a lot of negativity behind me, so I can go into October with a clean slate.

When I asked myself what I felt grateful for this month, it seemed like I was coming up with the same answers from previous months. My family was the main one for their endless love and support and the pure joy they bring me. Therapy was another one for allowing me to deal with my unprocessed trauma, leave the past behind and move forward. My piano was the final one because I’ve found myself playing more and more often because it inspires and relaxes me at the same time.

But I didn’t want to write about the same things over and over again, so I delved a bit deeper and came up with three more things I’m grateful for this month.

1. The kindness of strangers
I work in retail where the majority of my working day is spent serving customers at the till. This means that I interact with a lot of strangers all day every day. It can be difficult when you’re feeling a bit under the weather to plaster a smile on your face and make meaningful conversation with each person you meet.

I’ve noticed recently that serving a chatty, smiley and kind customer can completely lift my mood when I’m feeling down. There’s a lady that comes into the shop every few months and she always makes a point of talking to me because she also owns a rag doll cat. She always shows me photos of him and we compare notes about how similar our cats are in both looks and personality. These sort of interactions really put a spring in my step.

Sometimes it can just be a customer making a joke that sets us both off laughing, or a customer telling me something about their day. Either way, I love it when I get chatting to someone. It’s nice to connect with people so they don’t just see me as ‘the woman at the till.’

2. Calm
There’s an app that I’ve recently downloaded on my phone called ‘calm’. It’s been popping up on the recommendations page for a while now and I finally decided to give it a try. It isn’t free to use, but I’ve been enjoying the free trial for a few days now.

There’s meditations, relaxing music and sleep exercises to really help you relax and unwind. I’m actually listening to the music right now!

I found it particularly useful one night last week. I was trying to sleep but I just couldn’t drift off for some reason. My mind was racing and I felt too warm, then too cold and I couldn’t get comfortable and relax properly. This doesn’t happen to me very often, and it’s usually a sign that I’m a bit overwhelmed and need to get my thoughts in order.

I ended up getting out of bed at about 1am and going into our study room. I listened to one of the meditations and tried to get my thoughts in order and it really helped. Once I had listened to it, I felt a lot calmer and I realised that I had been spending way too much time and energy on social media, so I made a point of deleting some apps to give myself some space. I also felt the urge to write, so I kept the music on and started writing the beginning of a story. It was just what I needed, and when I finally went back to bed about an hour later, I fell into a deep sleep feeling inspired and relaxed.

3. Work Opportunities
I’ve recently been offered a chance to complete an animal care diploma through work, and I’m quite excited about it. It will be nice to not only have something to really get my teeth into, but it will also be a recognised qualification that I can add to my CV. It’s nice to have management that believe in me and my abilities enough to put me forward.

That’s it for this month, what are you grateful for at the moment?

-Holly

Follow me on Twitter @HollyRobiin

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