Sunday, May 8, 2011

Before We Get Started...

Things you should know: I'm currently a student, I work full-time, I'm starting a new job, I'm married, and I have a tendency to take on more than is reasonable for me to handle. When I take on more than is reasonable for me to handle (which is, oh, 90% of the time), I have a tendency to get cranky, sad and negative like whoa. Other things you should know: grad school and working full time has really brought out that cranky/sad/negative version of myself. And I don't like that very much. It's not pleasant for those closest to me, and it's not pleasant for me- who wants to live in their head full of whining and sadness? Final thing you should know: Depression runs in my family. I've had bouts of it that, happily, were managed through therapy and through being around loving friends and family. Manageable as it was, though, I'm not eager to revisit that, and I'm nervous that this bout of blues I've been experiencing is putting me closer to the dark place I'm not particularly into traveling to.

This has been a particularly rough weekend. I'm closing in on the last week of finals, starting a new job on Monday (while still doing portions of the job I'm leaving for the next month), I'm struggling with choosing education and career over starting a family right now, and it's been a really busy semester that has finally piled up to a point where I was in silent tears on the couch yesterday. I finally got my tail off the couch today to go study tonight at Barnes and Noble (shout-out to B&N) and during one of my (multiple) study breaks, I saw this book called "365 Thank Yous" by John Kralik ( It's the summary of a year-long project that Kralik took on when his life was at an unpleasant point; he decided that instead of focusing on all that was wrong, he would write a thank you note every day of 2008 to stay grateful and appreciative of the good things in his life. I read pieces of Kralik's book tonight while studying, and it was such a simple and brilliant idea that I decided to do something similar for myself. There are a lot of good things happening around me every day, and there are really great people around me, too. Why am I whining about what's broken instead of being grateful for what is so wonderful?

So here is the plan, people. I'm going to take a few minutes daily to be grateful, and I'm going to do so through this blog. I've bought a little notebook that's going to be in my bag at all times, so I can make notes of specific things I'm grateful for or appreciative of. This isn't some altruistic movement I'm trying to start- I'm trying to change my own perspective and keep my mentality in a more positive place, so this is pretty selfish, really. But if you want to play along and share, or just read about what I'm figuring out or shouting out that day- please do. It might be fun to do it together. =)

So here we go. Let's get our grateful on.

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