How Has The Pandemic Made You Grateful?

The COVID-19 pandemic has been consequential to say the least. In addition to a staggering death toll, it has brought disruption to all of us. And yet, that very disruption offers the opportunity to reflect on our everyday lives.

As Thanksgiving approaches in the U.S., are there things that you are grateful for due to the pandemic?

There are many possibilities. In-person Thanksgiving gatherings were discouraged last year, so the simple fact of seeing family for the holiday may take on a new-found appreciation.

If you have not had COVID, you may be thankful for your health; if you have had it, you may be thankful to have survived.

You may be grateful for the vaccine and the scientists who produced it so quickly, which has allowed safer in-person celebrations this year.


Listen to a podcast where Michael and Lee discuss the related question: ‘How do you show thanks?’ We also discuss a bonus question: ‘What book has had the biggest impact on you?’


Health care workers have been under remarkable stresses over the last year and a half, and continue to be even now. Giving thanks to them would not be unreasonable.

Nor would it be unreasonable to be grateful for the teachers, who between quickly adopting to teaching remotely to dealing with rapidly changing safety protocols and helping sometimes traumatized children and teens.

Other essential workers, including the people who grow, pick, ship, and sell the food we consume on Thanksgiving day deserve appreciation.

Will any of these groups get a special nod from you on Thursday? What other groups have been left out? Other than people, what else merits attention?

On this Thanksgiving, are there any new things you are grateful for, that have come about or been highlighted due to the pandemic?

Related questions: What are you grateful for? How are you going to celebrate Thanksgiving this year? Are there unexpected benefits to what we are going through? What is your favorite Thanksgiving tradition?

 

What’s The Most Amazing Natural Wonder You’ve Experienced?

There is a large variety of natural (i.e not man-made) beauty in the world. This includes mountains, waterfalls, canyons, coral reefs, sand dunes, and more. What do you consider the most remarkable natural wonder you’ve seen in person?

Share why if you wish.

What Trait Of Yours Do People Find Most Unusual?

Each one of us has a trait that is unusual — possibly several. Is there anything that others recognize as standing out from the crowd?

No two people are alike. Like snowflakes, each and every one of us is unique. What that means from a functional perspective is that we all have things about us — our personalities, our physical appearances, our beliefs, our experiences — that are unusual. If we didn’t, we’d be just like everyone else.


Related: Listen to an episode of the Intellectual Roundtable Podcast, where Lee and Michael discuss this question: ‘How do you think others see you?’ We discuss another question as well, ‘How can we maintain wonder?’


Of course, how you see yourself and how others see you might be different. Something that is perfectly normal to you might seem strange and different to your friends or your peers.

For example, imagine you happen to be double-jointed. You’ve always been double-jointed — you’ve never known anything else. But to someone who is not, it may seem highly unusual. The total number of people who are double-jointed is pretty small.

Are there behaviors or traits you have that other people think are different from most people? What trait of yours do other people find most unusual? Do you agree with them?

Related questions: What makes you you? What unusual habit do you have? How do you think others see you? What trait is most missing from our society?