9 blessings to count (for what I am grateful for)

I am prone to waking up on the wrong side of the bed some times and wonder why situations in my life seems so difficult. My better self will remind me that I am already living a very blessed life, and I should be nothing but very grateful for what I have been given. There are times when it is difficult for me (being sensitive and emotional) to snap out of my negative moods, thus today I have decided I should write out a list of things that makes me happy and I should be grateful for – for that rainy day when I need that subtle reminder.

1. Being healthy

This is something that many of us possess and yet take for granted every day. Isn't health in itself something to be really grateful for? We simply need to flash a thought of someone living in borrowed time or someone who needs to go through painful treatments for chronic/terminal illnesses and I assure you that you'll feel instantly better about whatever crappy day you have.

2. Having my sight and limbs intact

This is closely related to the point above but I think it deserve a mention on its own. Isn't it wonderful to be able to walk, write, paint, cook, etc? That we have the ability to travel to anywhere we want, enjoy any physical activity, and do interesting stuff with our hands, take in the most beautiful sights?  I think a lot of us take this for granted as well.

3. Being able to eat and taste whatever I want

I love to eat. Eating makes me happy or it comforts me when I feel down or stressed. Of course, nobody should over indulge in food, but it is a blessing to be able to eat. Next time you lift the fork and poke at that boring plate of food, re-think again, because no matter how bad it tastes, you should be grateful for it, for not everybody is so blessed – think about the millions of starving people in poorer countries.

4. Being self-employed

Working on my own and from home is indeed a great blessing, because it allows me to be in control of my own destiny to a certain extent. I am very grateful for this because in times of recession I do not feel insecure about my job. It is up to myself to ensure that I survive, and not because some top-level executive have decided that it is the best strategic decision to retrench 10,000 employees. Sure, my business may not be as stable as before, but it is still in my own hands. I am certain that if I work that extra bit harder than before, I will eventually reap fruits of my own labour. If not, at least I had a good shot at it. Anything beats those days I had whereby I worked 16 hour shifts to meet mad deadlines and at the end of the year, the bosses buy new cars and property, while we employees cannot even be sure if we are entitled to an extra month's bonuses.

5. Not having to wake up at a certain time

Having my own business for more than a year, I have learnt to appreciate routines. I used to hate waking up in the morning, but I've somehow grown to enjoy it. However, I do not like it at all when I have to do it because everyone says so. There are times when I feel absolutely uninspired and it was a waste of time being at the office and trying to churn out work for the sake of it. It would have been more productive if I was allowed to rest and recuperate – am sure the work produced would have been better. I also thought that it was pointless trying to work when all I really want to do is to sleep. Now I have planned my own routine, but at least it is designed for me.

I know that in huge organizations it may be difficult to give employees a degree of freedom, but there have been instances whereby it has been implemented successfully.

6. Having my family and partner

Not everyone can be so blessed to have a supportive family and who loves you for who you are. I have had severe issues with my parents in my earlier years but I am very glad that they have been sorted out now. They make the effort to accept me for the person I am and I know it in my heart. They have been a great stabilizing factor in my life, especially during uncertain times. It is easy to take people around you for granted, but I constantly remind myself that I wouldn't know the day they'll no longer be around, so I do make the effort to spend quality time with them.

7. The freedom to work from anywhere (with an internet connection)

Technically (but not financially yet), I am able to start my dream of working from anywhere I want to be as long as I have an internet connection and my laptop. I have great understanding clients who accept the way I work (virtually). In fact, am just indebted to the internet, or else I would not be able to fulfill my nomadic tendencies. I can write a whole new post (which I will) on how grateful I am for technology. Without the internet I would not be able to work from home, nor in the first place would I be able to realise I have a gift for design (which was discovered trying to design my own website).

8. Turning my passion into my career

There have been times when I almost wanted to give up but am glad I did not. For being a designer has allowed me to live the life I want, and make people happy in the process. It is indeed satisfying when my work helps my clients to generate more income, positive feedback, experiences, or attention. This is what that fuels and motivates me. I do not design because I like to look at pretty stuff, or to impress people of my ability, but rather the knowledge of the impact it may have on others, not only aesthetically, but economically, and even socially.

Good design is an important vehicle for carrying messages. On a material level it helps people to understand a product more, but it is a whole different ball game altogether when you can be involved in carrying a message for a social cause.

9. Being able to communicate to a wider audience

The last time I checked, I have like roughly 10 rss subscribers on this blog's feed. Which is really pretty insignificant in internet terms, but to me it matters, every 10 of you, no matter who you are. I feel blessed to have this platform to publish and share my thoughts with you. If I was born in an earlier era, I would not be able to do so at all! Sharing enables one to learn from each other, which I have learnt a lot by sharing, and also from material that people have shared online.

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If you're one of my 10 rss subscribers, do leave a comment and let me know of who you are if you have the time. :) It would be nice to get to know all of you. I am curious to know what people think of what I write on this site.