top of page

Finding Gratitude During the Pandemic

Enjoy the little things, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things.” – Robert Brault

I was recently listening to Lynn Twist, author of The Soul of Money, during an interview with Marianne Williamson. Lynn said that COVID has been a teacher. It certainly has shaken us up. COVID has taught me to feel gratitude for all I have been given.

What has COVID taught you? Can you find a gift? What can you be grateful for?

First of all, may I say that I am so grateful this year is almost over. This will be a year to remember. Some of us have lost loved ones. We have lost two dear friends, and we have loved ones who have gotten COVID and survived, including one of our daughters. It’s very scary, but hope is there. We have a new year approaching and several vaccines are on the way.

COVID has taught me that life is very precious. Activities I took for granted like being with friends and family, going to concerts, travel, all seem like a distant memory. I cannot wait to actually sit in Orchestra Hall again, with my dear husband on stage, and listen to the Detroit Symphony Orchestra live. Gathering with and hugging friends, being with our elders, these days will come again. We have hope.

The question is, how do we simply stay happy until things are different. I think we begin with gratitude and appreciation. It is said that what we appreciate and focus on expands.

One of the simplest things we can do is to notice simple things that we are grateful for and jot them down in a journal at the end of each day.

Don’t want to journal? It’s not your thing? Here is the simple version. Every morning when you wake up – before you get out of bed – think of one thing you are grateful for, then another, then another, then another. See what this does for your morning energy. You don’t have to write any of this down, so it takes just 30-60 seconds.

Another is to begin telling people how much we appreciate them. This can be our spouse, partner, children, workers at the grocery store, friends and neighbors. Once you begin, you will notice everything begins to shift for them and for you!

This exercise will work differently for everyone, so you will want to focus on this gratitude and appreciation exercise for the next 30 days. Make it a habit. It takes 30 days be create a new habit.

Imagine what would happen if you continued this gratitude and appreciation habit past 30 days. What would happen? Can I challenge you to try? I hope so!

When I first started this process myself, after simply writing the positive things that happened each day, I thought WOW – I have a lot of great things happening right now!

These are just a few of the things I recognized since I started this exercise:

· I started appreciating and noticing very simple things.

· I observed how much my energy had shifted.

· I saw that I was able to focus and finish important projects with ease.

· I began getting rid of clutter and freeing up space in my home and office by releasing things.

· I noticed how I was “holding on to my stuff” out of fear that I might need it one day. It’s all energy, and the clutter had been zapping my energy.

· I started saying “no” to things that did not serve me.

· I also noticed that I began to lose some extra weight I’ve been carrying around.

It has certainly had a positive effect on me, and I believe it will be for you as well! I hope you give yourself this gift. It’s free, it’s fast and it’s easy. Just keep it simple and watch for those miracles and momentum to appear!


Katana Abbott, CFP®, is a Retirement Reinvention Coach, founder of the Smart Women Companies, and the host Smart Women Talk Radio with over a million subscribers. For over 30 years, Katana has shown women how to take charge of their life and finances and believes it’s never too early to plan for expected and unexpected events like retirement, encore careers, moving abroad, or preparing for long-term care. She has written several books, created a financial literacy course, and is a popular speaker. Katana has been honored by NAWBO as one of Detroit’s Top 10 Business Women, receiving the Breakthrough Award.

To download her new retirement guide, Three Smart Strategies to Maximize Your Retirement Income. visit


bottom of page