Sitting down and reflecting on the beauty of life can be a truly humbling experience. These days, we are constantly surrounded by negativity and devastating news concerning the pandemic, national unrest, and other chaos. As a result, it can be hard to find the beauty in things. That’s why, especially right now, it’s most important to try and find a positive perspective. Whatever your beliefs may be, the creation and existence of life and human interaction as well as how we all come together is magical in its own right.
Falling on January 22, Celebration of Life was a holiday created by Ronald Regan and it featured an anti-abortion message. Over time and with different presidents, everything about the celebration — including if it even occurs — has changed. Some articles regarding the National Celebration of Life Day describe the holiday as a day to focus on the children and grandchildren in our lives. However, considering the times we’re living in, I think we should focus on all individuals.
Here’s how you can celebrate life on the National Celebration of Life Day.
1. Do things that bring you joy.
Get takeout from your favorite restaurant. Paint. Have a Zoom dance party with your friends. Go on a hike. Above all, enjoy yourself.
2. Do things to bring joy to others.
Send a handwritten note to a friend. Call and check in with someone you may have lost touch with. Practice random acts of kindness.
3. Plan a fun trip for after the COVID-19 pandemic ends.
Pick out all the places you want to see and look forward to them.
4. Spend time meditating.
Thinking of all of the people who have endured stress and loss this week can be a cathartic experience. Send condolences and healing thoughts their way.
5. Recognize the beauty in the world.
Take photographs. Sit outside in the fresh air. Collect some leaves and press them in wax paper.
I have often thought it was beautiful when a loved one passes and their family chooses to hold a celebration of life rather than a funeral. I think that changes the perspective to a more positive one. As a rule, funerals focus on the loss and grief whereas a celebration of life can focus more on the individual’s accomplishments and the way they made others feel. And that’s way more important.
Unfortunately, this past year has been one filled with great losses for our entire world. As a result, I’m sure most of us are finding it difficult to find the joy in life when we have experienced such grief and unrest. So I encourage you to try and celebrate life in one small way every single day even if it’s as simple as jotting down all the things that you’re grateful for. Start small: a hot cup of coffee in the morning, birds chirping in the distance, or mastering a new yoga pose. Doing this daily can help you begin to celebrate your life. After all, when you’re more positive in regards to yourself, it helps you celebrate the lives of those around you.
Finally, make sure to celebrate every day because as the famous quote by Mary Oliver says, “Tell me, what it is you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?”