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As college students, we lead busy lives. Outside of school, we may work or be involved in extracurriculars. We go through the motions of getting up, getting ready for work or school, and then we go back home to get right back at it again the next day. It is easy to be stuck in a certain frame of mind, thinking that we are not happy, bored or any other negative aspects we may view our lives to be. 

If you are feeling one of these, that is okay. We have all felt these feelings before. Here is the thing to remember: Life is priceless. We have only this life to live and it might sound cliche, but really take the time to think about it. Practicing gratitude takes time. Whether it be two minutes or 10, take this time to remind yourself what blessings your life holds. Through time, you will find yourself to be so much happier.

Here are some ways to be more grateful.

First, when getting up in the morning, tell yourself today is going to be a great day. List the things you are thankful for and have in your life, whether it be that you are able to walk, see, or hear, or that you have supportive family and friends that you can lean back on in times of need. 

Say affirmations: I am strong. I am thankful. I am powerful. I am grateful. As you repeat affirmations over and over, you will draw these things to you. If you draw positivity, you will continue to think positively. If you draw negativity, you will continue to think negatively.

Love yourself. Do what’s best for you. Don’t try to compare yourself to others. Also, start living – What is holding you back? 

Practice and repeat daily. Just like learning anything new, it takes repeating until it comes naturally. You realize, then, that the little things don’t matter. Know that your life is meaningful, you are loved, and there is nothing or no one that can stand in the way of your dreams.

What reminded me to be grateful was an individual I once met. On Feb. 14, that individual was enjoying his night at a bar near Ohio State as the band was playing. The next thing he knew, a stray bullet came into the bar, severing his spinal cord – he could now be paralyzed from the waist down. I will always remember his positive attitude. 

This really hit home for me, knowing that this or any other unexpected event can happen at any given moment. I choose to seek gratitude for the life that I have now and I hope you do, too.

Interested in mindfulness or having a more positive outlook on life check out Sky@UC or if you are in need of someone to talk to about the stressors of life, please do not hesitate to contact UC Psychological and Counseling Services (CAPS).