It's the second day of 2011, and for the first time in years, I am so much at peace with last year 2010 and personally very proud of how far I have come in life. I believe 2010 was an outstanding year – maybe because I am older and wiser; or because a good number of my resolutions were accomplished; or maybe because I dived into unknown waters by starting Dunia Magazine, etc. What is sure is, I got to spend much time with family, made new friends and reconnected with old ones. Most importantly, I rung in 2011 with a spirit of thankfulness – not of disappointment, panic, uncertainty, or regrets. I am simply thankful and looking forward to this new year.

How about you?

I believe the reason why I feel such peace is because as the year was winding down, instead of spending time needlessly browsing the internet, or racking up credit card debt in the name of holiday shopping, chit chatting about nothing on the phone or chasing the $, I made it a point to reflect on and count my blessings instead; all of a sudden, the blessings of God became all too obvious. How often are we so busy and  stressed that we forget to be thankful and grateful?

Here are 7 things you need to shout 'allelujahhhh' for as 2011 begins …

1. Life: What a gift! To be able to get up in the morning and see another day, to be reading this post right now, to look out your window and see the sunlight, or snow, the trees, to be able to experience the beauty of God's creations and most importantly to be healthy (if for some reason you are dealing with any illness, praise God for good health and claim it right now). There were many who never got the chance to see this new year, remember?

2. Family: Don't you just feel warm at the mention of family? Loved ones – your children, spouse, parents, your brothers and sisters, aunts and uncles, grandparents. Those who love you unconditionally for who you are, who believe in you, whom you can always depend on and lean on. The ones you make sacrifices for, who will go out of their way for you. Give thanks for them.

3. Friends: These are the jewels in our lives, the priceless gems that sparkle and light up everyday. The ones who come into our world at some point, bringing warmth and love while demanding nothing in return. I am so very thankful for my friends (the real ones) – I know them and they know me. Words often don't need to be spoken, but the bond of true friendship is always there. The reason why we should be thankful for good friends is that they are there for us even when we don't deserve it. Good friends are quite rare to come by … so are diamonds; the difference is, you can't buy them. We have all been blessed to have them in our lives. In 2011, I'll try not to take mine for granted … "ha,ha,ha" I guess try is the keyword … seriously.

4. Achievements: However 'little' they may seem, every milestone, every good deed is worth celebrating. Anything that you have done or did in 2010 to bring a smile to someone's face, a sparkle in a stranger's eyes, a bounce in someone's step, hope to a hopeless soul, joy where there was pain … is worth being thankful for. Don't dismiss the little things, life is not always about the trophys, the glamor and glitter – let the world celebrate that – you give yourself a pat on the back and keep on keeping. 

5. Shelter: If you have a roof over your head – whether it's your mama's house, your friend's house, your house … or even some homeless shelter, give thanks anyway. Chances are, if you are reading this article, I'll bet you're not living on the streats …. hmmm, how would I know. Be thankful, you know what I mean.

6. Livelihood: Do you own a business, do you have a job, are you gifted in any way and 'hustling' to earn an honest buck? Be thankful … even as you dream of upgrading to a million bucks (smile). No matter how humble, or how much you'd rather be doing something else, please take time to be thankful for what you have. It's a blessing.

7. New beginnings: A new day has come! The most remarkable gift every human has is that of a new beginning at any point in their life. Wipe the slate clean, flip the page to a fresh new one and begin to write a new story, which really could just be a continuation of the old one. Plan and execute, be humble, be not afraid to work hard and please stop complaining.

There is so much to be thankful for in 2011 … do you agree? So before you get on the 'I want, I need list', dwell first on the 'I am thankful for list'.

I wish you a very happy New Year, I believe 2011 is the year of the 'immeasureable'. Go out and claim your divine inheritance!


  1. Nice list of 7. To these I will add health!

  2. Oh Lema! This is great! I am right there with you, just being thankful and appreciating every single bit of God’s goodness. Great points too! It is mazing how doing these simple things can change your perspective!
    Thanks for sharing this. Happy New Year again

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