OPINION: Self-reflection is important, especially during the holiday season

Correspondent Angelica Luna writes about the importance of self-reflection as the JSU semester comes to an end and the holiday season approaches. (Helder Almeida/123RF)Correspondent Angelica Luna writes about the importance of self-reflection as the JSU semester comes to an end and the holiday season approaches. (Helder Almeida/123RF)

Angelica Luna, Correspondent

Now that our challenging semester is coming to an end, it is important to look back on things that have taught us lessons, scenarios in which we grew and practice gratitude towards others and ourselves. 

Since the holidays are right around the corner, we should reflect on the opportunities that have shown themselves, the gifts we have been given and those that mean a great deal to us. 

For some, expressing gratitude comes through engaging in hobbies. By trying new things, you become more thankful for all the skills you are developing. This year, there are plenty of new home activities and projects to catch your attention, and start you on a path to being thankful for all you can learn.

Others coordinate events at which to spend more time with friends at family. It is important to show those around you that you are grateful to have them in your life. Some groups pick days to have a ‘Friendsgiving’ dinner, some travel home to be closer to their family for the holidays, and some groups have holiday parties to let those that they are thankful for have a great time during the holiday season. 

Personally, one of my favorite ways to reflect on myself and my gratitude is through journaling. Especially during the last few months, it was important to me to explore the things that make me happy. 

I followed a list of journal entries to practice self-reflection and to remind myself of all that I am thankful for. This list gave me the opportunity to have a quiet moment in my day, and think of nothing but what I was writing about. It is important to take these small moments for yourself, and following a prompt about something you care about helps you focus on things you would not normally think about. The entries I enjoy following are: 

  1. What are you grateful for today? 
  2. What little blessings did you experience today?
  3. What do you love most about yourself?
  4. What about you makes you special?
  5. What risks are you most grateful for having taken?
  6. What do you desire most from your life right now? 
  7. Who are you most grateful for in your life right now and why?
  8. What relationships make your life feel rich and full?
  9. What is your proudest accomplishment?
  10. What has helped you become more of who you are?
  11. What is your favorite emotion to feel?
  12. What painful experience has helped you grow?
  13. What challenge or obstacle are you grateful for?
  14. How can you inject gratitude throughout your daily life?
  15. Write down your favorite affirmations.
  16. Make a list of things you’re grateful for.
  17. What is the best gift you’ve ever received? 
  18. Describe the last time your heart was overflowing with joy. 
  19. What activities do you most enjoy doing?
  20.  What fear have you overcome?
  21. Describe the last time you laughed so hard you almost peed. 
  22. What everyday items are you most grateful for?
  23. What is your top goal and why are you grateful for it?
  24. What do you already have that you want more of?
  25. Describe the last time you did something nice for someone. 
  26. Write a list of things you want to manifest.
  27. How do you plan to express gratitude in the next month?

To me, it is important to explore the obstacles you have overcome as well as the things that make you happy in life. These writing assignments helped me think about things, people, and events that I normally don’t think about, and may take for granted. 

Gratitude is a very contagious condition, and it is important to show those around you that you appreciate having them in your life. Happy Holidays!

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