It’s thanksgiving, and out of all the American traditions I think this must be my favourite. In Europe, we mostly adopt all the holidays that are connected to consumption, like Halloween, Black Friday, or Valentine’s Day, while not showing a lot of interest in holidays like this one. Appreciation and the feeling of being grateful, is such a strong force in us if we choose to cultivate it. Having studied happiness, both from a philosophical, sociological and psychological standpoint, I can say that this is one of the elements in our lives that we can consciously trigger to create a greater sense of purpose, joy, and peace in our lives. Scarlet Johansson once said that «It’s important to remind young people that peace is the only victory» and this is something that resonates so deeply in me. We hurry too much, and respond to a pressure that is not really something that we need to take in and make personal. Practicing to remember to feel grateful for where we are, who we have in our lives, and our own strength, can be a good place to start to feel peaceful, and create a clearer vision of where we want to go.
This year, I’m grateful for a lot of things. After having a really tough year after first graduating from university, my life has slowly, but steadily started to form a new direction, one that truly fits my ambitions, goals, and personality. Trying to fit into a full time job, when all I wanted was to start my own company, working freelance with a range of different clients, has been a very real and honest trial, one that made me immensely unhappy, suffocating the fire that I’ve always fueled my ambition with. I have learned so much, and will be forever grateful for allowing myself to really experience, and stand still with this discomfort. It has underlined what I have always felt about how I want my professional life to be like, and taught me that I would rather want to struggle, but thrive in my own projects, than be unhappy with a better economy. I am now editor of Less Magazine, a project developer and manager of a startup, and working freelance with clients that I really enjoy collaborating with. It’s incredibly hard, but I’m incredibly happy!
I’m also grateful for all the love I have in my life. From family, to friends that are scattered all over the world, and this man that I didn’t expect to meet. I have never been the kind of girl who had a lot of friends, and always been very content with that. I enjoy just being alone, just as much as I enjoy being with the carefully curated selection of people that I would do anything in the world for. I invest a lot in them, and all I hope is that they can feel that. How grateful I am for their support, and love. For understanding me without having to try, because we know each other so well. Allowing ourselves to feel happy and proud on each others behalf, supporting each other through the rough parts, and just being grateful for the common ground we share in that we love and appreciate each other, is a foundation that this incredible sense of peace grows out from, one that consumes everything else.
‘Le plaisir des bons cours, c’est la reconnaissance.’
Jean Fransçois de La Harpe