What if I told you there was a simple magic formula that would increase your happiness levels immediately? This magic formula would make you feel less lonely, more engaged, less worried, and more content. What’s more, it’s free. Want it?
Positive psychology research has shown a strong correlation between expressing gratitude and living a good life. According to Harvard Medical School, gratitude can make you healthier, happier, more connected to other people, and better able to deal with life’s challenges. Who couldn’t use that kind of a boost in 2020?
In this month of November, the Botetourt County Libraries encourage everyone to participate in our #ReadGrateful Challenge. To sign up, go to botetourtva.beanstack.org, or install the Beanstack app on your phone or tablet. Then log your reading time and check off the challenges!
Reading can be a big gratitude boost on its own. We have several suggested titles to increase your gratitude, or you can pick your own. Try to find some books that make you feel good after reading them, or that increase your care for other people and your gratitude for your own situation.
Can you read for 11 hours? All it takes is about 30 minutes a day if you start today (November 11). Try reading for 10 minutes in the morning, lunchtime and evening – and you’re done! For every hour read, you earn a new themed badge – for 12 total (the first badge is awarded after 20 minutes of reading).
Beyond reading, earn badges for tackling gratitude challenges. “Share the Love” invites you to connect with other people by calling or writing a letter, and to encourage them by telling them “thank you” or expressing your love for them.
The “Building Community” badge reminds us how grateful we are to live and/or work in Botetourt, and to give back and make it even stronger. Volunteer your time to a good cause, make a donation, shop local, post a positive comment on social media, or show respect to a stranger by opening the door for them or complimenting them.
Lastly, “Thank Yourself.” You need to fill your own bucket before you can share the joy with others. Take a moment to appreciate the meal in front of you. Post encouraging quotes on your mirror. Remind yourself of positive qualities in yourself or others. Take a day off or treat yourself to something special.
Now, stop and think. What is one thing you are grateful for right now? You are obviously literate, able to read these words. You presumably have something to eat every day. You can probably see, move your fingers, and smile. You live and/or work in wonderful Botetourt County and have free access to the public library. These are no small blessings. This month, join the Libraries as we make a special effort to #ReadGrateful and be #BoCoGrateful. We are grateful for YOU!