“Give thanks in all circumstances” 1 Thessalonians 5:18
Circumstances surrounding COVID-19 might not bring about immediate feelings of thankfulness. After all, our plans and routines have been disrupted in many ways and people have been affected by illness, disappointment, financial strain, and frustration.
Still, when I think about the past days and weeks, there are many aspects of life that I am thankful for. One of those has been more time in the kitchen. As a dietitian, I love food and the nourishment it brings to our bodies. I believe that all foods can fit into a healthy eating pattern, from cinnamon rolls on a Saturday morning to a colorful steak salad for a weeknight dinner. A couple of my new favorite recipes are savory oats with beef sausage and tacos with flank steak, bell peppers, and avocado corn salsa. Both are so flavorful! If you’re curious about how to create balanced meals, think about including fruits and vegetables as half of your plate, protein food/s as a quarter of your plate, and a grain or starch as a quarter of your plate, with dairy (like a glass of milk) on the side. I use this method all the time and it’s so simple.
Another perk of quarantine for me has been the ability to fit more movement into my days. Since I’m working from home, I can put on shorts and a t-shirt and go out for a walk or run so easily! I also find that taking short breaks to do a few jumping jacks, squats, or push-ups between meetings or tasks helps me to refresh and refocus.
During this time, I have been so thankful for technology that allows for connection despite “physical distancing”. I normally see my coworkers at the office each day, gather with friends from church multiple times each week, and socialize and work in other group settings. Although I’m not able to do those things in person right now, I can still call, text, and video chat. The shift to virtual settings has even prompted me to reach out to people I haven’t talked with recently and “meet” up with family that live states away.
Finally, I’m grateful to be part of a church that fosters community and helps those in need, even (and especially) with the interference of COVID. Prayer, spiritual growth, and Christian friendship aren’t restricted by the pandemic or the guidelines surrounding it. I’ve found that now is an opportune time to give and to encourage people.
Focusing on blessings helps me guide my thoughts to a positive perspective rather than getting (or staying) bummed by the changes that have happened. I also hope it will remind me not to take the “normal” things, like traveling or going out to eat, for granted when we are able to do them again. Until then, I’ll be enjoying more tasty at-home meals and sunset walks!
What are you thankful for?
When you want to transform your health,
you have to do it for your self,
but not by yourself.
Healthy change can be hard. But it’s not impossible.
We’re here to help you through it. Every step of the way.