I wanted to take the opportunity to give thanks for a lot of things this week. Instead of making it a long blog post, I’ve decided to model this after David Letterman’s Top 10 lists. The numbers are in no particular order – I can honestly say that I’m equally thankful for each item on the list. So, please don’t view the list as it’s ordered by rank.
10. People who challenge me. It’s not easy to like them sometimes, but I’ve learned to find the positive in the challenge I’m facing. The next time someone challenges you, don’t take offense. Instead, ask yourself, “What can I learn?”
9. Freedom. Thanks to our founding fathers and the great men and women that keep our country safe, I’ve been fortunate to grow up exercising the freedoms of speech, religion and many others that we sometimes take for granted. I’m reminded that freedom isn’t free.
8. Books. Read any good books lately? I have. Whether it’s for personal/professional development or pure entertainment, I’m thankful for the gift of literacy. My imagination is so vivid thanks to my exposure to reading at an early age. And yes, I’m a firm believer that the book is always better than the movie.
7. Pets. Dogs, cats, hamsters, fish, sugar gliders, horses, cows, even opossums have taught me a few things in life. 1.) Responsibility and 2.) Compassion. No matter how horrible my day is, I know that I have a little furry brown monster at home that is always happy to see their best friend. Having a few jerky treats in my pocket also helps. 🙂
6. My Job. I can identify with Confucius’ quote: “Choose a job you love, and you will never have to work a day in your life.” The work I’m fortunate to be doing as Director of Career Connections for SIFE USA is not only challenging, but just as rewarding. What I do has meaning and I’m making a difference in people’s lives. Want to get involved? Send me an email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or go to www.sifeusa.org.
5. Laughter. I’ve been blessed with a sense of humor. Sometimes that sense of humor is a little weird, but I can typically find something to laugh about every day. How many people can say that? Life is too short to be grumpy. You’ll be amazed at how good it feels to bring a smile to someone else’s face.
4. Music. I’m thankful for music. I don’t discriminate in my music preferences – from classical to heavy metal, pop to country, Latin to alternative grunge, my music library keeps me going every day. Life has a soundtrack. What’s yours?
3. Mentors and role models. Mentors have inspired me to be the person I am today. Even though some of these mentors have since passed, I’m still going forward because of their commitment to my success. Curious who’s on my list? My Granddad, Jack Shewmaker (here’s a link to one of his last speeches), Christopher Reeve, my parents, and wonderful wife are a few mentors that I’ve learned a lot from over the years. Do you have a mentor?
2. Friends. Friends come and go over the years, but some stick by you through the toughest times in your life. I have several of those friends and am thankful for their understanding, motivation, and their willingness to listen to me as I’ve poured my heart out over the years. We’ve had some bad times together, but more importantly, we’ve had a LOT of great times. So, here’s to many more of those good times ahead.
1. Family. I really wouldn’t be here today without the love and support of my family. I’ve learned many life lessons along the way and they’ve instilled in me the values and beliefs I still uphold today. Family always comes first. This is something that continues to ring true as my wife and I begin to think about starting our own family.
One last (but not least) thing that I’m thankful for: YOU! Thanks for reading my blog, commenting and sharing content with your network and helping out job seekers of all kinds. It’s all about paying it forward and I’m happy to see you participating!
That’s it! What are the things you’re thankful for? I’d love to hear them. Happy Thanksgiving!