What We Can Learn from...

The California Wildfire Disaster: An Opportunity for Gratitude

The California blaze ate up houses faster than piranhas devour prey. The news hour grabbed our gaze without our permission as multi-million dollar houses of the stars and mobile homes incinerated as equals. Sound-bites mentioned celebrities, we aren’t asked to remember names of the thousands of evacuees.

Yes, the rich and famous have more resources for recovery, but spiritual renewal is available to all survivors. Their thanks for being alive and having family and friends are not charred, and if we news-watchers are lucky, we can learn from their perspective.

With the holidays nearing, here is a Gratitude Guide to help us ward off depression, loss and social isolation—feelings that often accompany both healing from disasters and managing the unintended consequences of the holiday season.

Gratitude Guide for the Holidays and New Year

  1. Send e-cards or snail-mail cards to friends, family and long-lost others. Use the New Years to explain why you have reconnected with them.
  2. Volunteer for something meaningful to you.
  3. Compliment someone—especially your least favorite relatives.
  4. Go through your closets and give away things you and your family don’t need.
  5. Make a list of the good things in your life.
  6. Change one very small and manageable part of your behavior that you’ve needed to change but didn’t because of your fear and lack of resolve.
  7. Write down your positive qualities.

(This article is part of the Idea Masters of www.networkabudance.com When you open the home page, scroll just below the thumbnail boxes, click on the link Connect and then select Idea Masters.)

*** For Women Only: If you would like to be part of Dr. Wish’s research for her next book on women’s love relationships and get one hour of FREE counseling, go to her website and click in the Research box in the upper right and take the online research survey. Be sure to include you contact information and the word SELFGROWTH so that Dr. Wish can contact you.

Author's Bio: 

LeslieBeth Wish is a Psychologist, Clinical Social Worker and author who is nationally recognized for her contributions to women, love, relationships, family, career, workplace, and organizations.

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