gratitude-a-thon day 2060: the shit i’ve learned so far

Today’s my birthday. And as Oprah would say, these are the “Thing I know for sure”:

We are strong. We are stronger than any Netflix character, any super hero, any pair of Spanx. We can get through shit even a Navy Seal couldn’t get through.

We need people. You may be shy, introverted, reclusive, or quiet, but it doesn’t matter, you still need people who are your own. People who love you, who show up like Uber Eats when you need them, and who believe in your power to meet any challenge, beat any opponent, shit talk any fear in order to be the Betty White of your own life.

We need to move. No matter what age, no matter what physical challenges we have, we just have to move our bodies every single day. Whether it’s running, walking, biking, hiking, or dancing like Elaine in Seinfeld. Whether you like the fictional heart attack-inducing Peloton (And Just Like That AND Billions–a PR nightmare) or the ab-inspired PIlates, downward dogging Yoga, Rock Climbing, or the fucking Olympic event Curling, exercise is the key to mental and physical bad assery. FACT.

We need to keep growing. We need to stay engaged. Whether your’re nine or 99, we need to give ourselves permission to grow up until the moment our hearts stop beating. Learning new things, staying curious and open is one of the keys in not just being alive, but actually living. The game stops when you stop.

We need to laugh. Laughing is underrated. Have you ever not felt better when you’ve squished up your face and almost peed your pants because of someting funny? Has giving or receiving a chuckle ever failed to improve your mood or you day, or the way your body feels? The answer is no. I know the answer is no, so don’t even bother telling me because I can’t hear you anyway. Lighten up. Watch comedy. Don’t take everything so seriously. Tell a joke, or be a joke. Laughing is like one of those life saving round floaties they send you when you’re out at sea and drowning. It makes things better, your head, your bod, your friends, your family. I swear that even my dog likes it when I laugh.

We need to be compassionate and kind because we are compassionate and kind. Think of other people and where they stand. Help out when you can–physically and mentally. Whether it’s a call, a text, or a smoke signal, shoveling someone’s walk, holding a door open, or giving away that really good parking space you waited five minutes for, you can change someone’s day, mind, life. Smile at people for absolutely no reason. Make a donation. Volunteer somewhere that means something to you. Show your fellow humans some compassion and kindness and you can see how the small things you do with love can make a big difference and be a big difference, especially in this completely bizarre and crazy moment in time.

Get a dog. Rescue one, give birth to one, whatever you gotta do, but get one to share your life with. BEST THING EVER.

Be grateful. You knew it was coming. Look around constantly for the good in your world. Some days you might need a microscope. Use it. Gratitude will never ever let you down. It’s as reliable as the tax bill, and as life affirming as potato chips (and you know how I feel about those).

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