(My apologies. This post was ‘posted’ on 31.12.2013 – or so I thought! I just found that somehow it was sitting in the ‘scheduled’ list – to be published on 1.12.2014!!! I’ve sent so many people to this link. Now I know why they had some trouble!)
A few months ago I heard a radio interview with the author of a book called “365 Gratefuls“. This book was written/put together by Australian photographer, Hailey Bartholomew, who was suffering depression at the time of starting the book. It was never planned to be a book, it just turned into one.
Hailey just started taking a photograph a day of something she was grateful for, in a bid to focus on the positives in her life, rather than on the negatives that her depressive mind wanted to focus on. For more of her story check out this page at 365Grateful.com
The book 365 Gratefulscontains a year’s worth of photos of things Hailey is grateful for. And in the process of the focusing on these things, she eventually conquered her depression, created a group of followers on Flickr who also benefited from their own focus on gratitude, and eventually created her book (in conjunction with her husband Andrew Bartholomew).
The reason the book got extra publicity was that actor Sam Worthington happened upon the book and thought it was a wonderfully simple book that could help a lot of people, including friends of his, who experience depression every day. He emailed Hailey and offered to help her publicise it (she ignored his emails for some time, thinking they were from someone playing a joke!)
I have not read the book myself, but I have seen some of it on the website. And it has inspired me.
So this new year, 2014, I am aiming to take a photograph every day of something I am grateful for. I’m going to mix it up and use Instagram (for the first time really) to capture these photos, and I will also be creating an album on Pinterest, Flickr and my Facebook page, and as often as possible, also on Twitter. There may be days when I don’t manage a photo (hopefully not many), but I’ll aim to at least tweet one of my “gratefuls” each day.
Would you like to join me in documenting the 365 Gratefuls of your life? I’d really love you to! Living with CFS/ME and other chronic illnesses can often lead to depression, and even if you are not depressed, it can still sometimes be hard to focus on the positives our life is abundant with, rather than the pain and fatigue we are experiencing.
I’m inviting you to join me on a grateful journey, whether it be via photography or just with one word that you tweet every day with the hashtags #365gratefuls #spoonie. If it seems too overwhelming, don’t let it be. If you miss a day – or week – you could always just post 7 photos or tweets in a day.
And if you happen across this blog post and it’s mid-January, or mid July for that matter, you can still join in. You can just start your 365 days of gratitude at a different time to me. It’s the process and what we get out of it that is important, not whether you start it on January 1st or whether you miss a day or week here or there.
Let me know what you think of my #365Gratefuls idea and whether you’re going to join me.
And please pop over to 365Grateful.com or this blog of Hailey’s at YouCantBeSerious.com.au and let Hailey and Andrew know how grateful you are that they created their 365 Gratefuls book or even buy the book if it’s something that you think you’d like to read (I’m not an affiliate).
Happy New Year my friends! May this year bring you health beyond your wildest dreams and expectations … and happiness to go with it!
And let’s all share our gratitude together with our own #365Gratefuls 🙂
Edit: Here is the link to my Instagram photos so far –