10 Days of Gratitude

The holidays have arrived!

Attitude of gratitude

I have made it a priority this season to slow down and not let the season's inevitable craziness sneak in to steal my jolly. This has to sometimes be intentional for me. I love the holidays, don’t get me wrong. It’s just that they can sometimes feel hectic and overwhelming; especially when dealing with vision loss and the struggle that can accompany macular degeneration.

In order to stay on track with my attitude of gratitude, I’ve decided to make a 10 Days of Christmas gratitude calendar. Twelve is the norm, but that was honestly too much of a commitment for me this year. I’ve decided to make my gratitude calendar with our awesome community in mind so anyone who wants to join me, can! Time to finish off this all too strange year strong, shall we?

Print this list out and join me! Let’s make it a fantastic end of 2020!

December 15th:

Let’s appreciate our beautifully decorated homes and reminisce. I don’t know about you, but most of the holiday decorations I carry memories and traditions with them. Now, I’m aware that some of this can be hard or sad, as over the years life happens. We lose loved ones or sometimes wish things could be different in the present. Try to gently nudge yourself past hard feelings today and allow the joy to take over. Today is a great day to be thankful for all of our happiest memories. Give yourself permission to cherish them and not focus on vision loss today.

December 16th:

It’s the perfect day to write an old fashioned holiday greeting to someone. If your vision doesn’t allow you to write like you once did, don’t let this stop you! Send an email on your favorite electronic device. Or, have a family member or friend help you. ‘Tis the season to give... people WANT to help! Life can be so busy sometimes and the days can really get away from us. Let’s make it a point today to slow down and brighten someone’s day.

December 17th:

Today’s a great day to thank the people who help make our lives easier! Our postal workers, bank tellers, favorite store clerks, therapists (and anyone else who helps us throughout the year). News flash friends, these awesome people are overlooked and overworked during the holidays! I’d normally bake some holiday goodies for them, but with the pandemic still going strong I’ll be shopping small and buying treats from our local bakery. Attaching a quick note of gratitude to these treats goes a long way and is guaranteed to cause smiling. Smiling’s my favorite! Anyone???

December 18th:

Today, I’m going to give my eyes a big, HUGE break!My eyes are tired! I wear my contacts all of the waking hours of every day. I don’t see well without them... but my eyes need a break. The air is dry, my eyes are irritated, and I’m going to not wear my contacts today so they can just breathe.

December 19th:

Let’s do some productive exercise as a form of self-love. Our bodies are so amazing when we stop to think about it, aren’t they? Let’s thank them by getting our heart pumping and blood flowing today. What is productive exercise you ask? It’s getting a task completed that you don’t normally do because it’s more difficult. You know, vacuuming, cleaning baseboards, and dusting off fans!

December 20th:

Today, let’s do some healthy meal prepping! I’m grateful for the nutrients food provides my eyes in order to keep them as healthy as possible. I’m not sure if anyone else feels me on this but ehhh... I haven’t been eating the healthiest this month. Meal prepping for this week will help ensure I stay on track with my healthy eating goals.

December 21st:

Today, let’s clean out a closet or two and donate gently used clothing, winter coats, and shoes to those in need. This gratitude gift is twofold! Clearing clutter and creating an organized space can help us feel accomplished, AND donating items to those in need brings joy to both parties. This is especially true during the holidays and winter months. Plus, staying organized really helps those of us who struggle with vision loss. My motto: everything in its place!

December 22nd:

It’s a great day to treat our eyes with a new pair of sunglasses!Sunglasses are not just for the summer months. It’s important to protect our eyes from the potentially harmful sun all year long. It’s worth mentioning that sunglasses don’t have to be expensive to be quality. I break and lose my sunglasses too often to spend a ton of money on them.

December 23rd:

Be grateful for yourself today. Make a mental or written list of all the things you love about yourself. You deserve it! Then, treat yourself to something (or lots of things) you enjoy doing. Binge watch all the Lifetime Christmas movies with lots of snacks! Take a hot bath! Splurge on that new shirt you’ve been wanting. Oftentimes, I find myself focusing on my faults. Not today! Today, I am thankful for ME.

December 24th:

Today, let’s take it all in. Whatever is going on around us, let’s be fully present and intentional about finding the joy... even if some of it may feel hard. We get to choose where we focus our energy and perspective.

Happy Holidays,

Andrea Junge

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