“We're alive, man!” and Other Great Things to be Thankful For

By Catherine Lang-Cline

Let me start by saying that “we’re alive, man!” is not my quote. It is what Jeff Bridges said when he received the Cecil B. DeMille Award at the 76th Annual Golden Globe Awards and being thankful is really is as simple as that. 

Yes, life can be hard. We all have highs and lows and sometimes fire we have to walk through as humans. And yes, some people are born into Hollywood royalty but that doesn’t guarantee happiness, and some people are born into regular families that can be charmed lives or get thrown more challenges than others. Ultimately, the one thing that we all have in common and the one thing that matters most is that today, we are alive. Today we have another day to be thankful, to be grateful, to make a difference.

With each day that we are alive, we can make a change in our life or someone else’s. We can stop in our chaos and say “thank you” to someone that made a big or small difference in our life. Doing that is an amazing gift.  We can also hold the door open, give a compliment, smile at someone because it just may be what they needed today. We are immensely powerful in how we can be game-changers. Think about this for a moment, maybe you are not the one to achieve greatness, but instead you are the catalyst to another person reaching their level of greatness. No sports figure, actor, teacher, doctor, business person, or really anyone, can truly say that they did it alone. There are hundreds of people that simply assist the next big achiever. Who doesn’t like to say, “I know him/her!”? You are alive, make a difference.

More about you, because you have so much to be thankful for. If you are down, you are not out. You are alive and what you are going through could be the pivotal point in your life’s story. Keep going! You have seen the movies where someone has a normal life, trouble ensues, protagonists triumphs! Everyone has these moments but the key is to figure out how to get to your next chapter. Start by giving thanks. You have SO MUCH to be thankful for! Then you get to share with others about your epic battle that results in victory.

Look around, maybe make a list of all of the things you have to be thankful for. List every person that was kind to you, loved you or did something that made you feel seen. Think of all of your favorite foods from childhood and now. I know that I am very thankful for baked goods because they make me happy, as does hearing music and seeing art. I am thankful for experiencing the fall colors, the crunching of leaves, and the cool air on my face as well as the sun’s warmth on it. I am thankful that I have a warm bed inside of a cute, little house. I am most thankful and grateful for the people around me that know me and care for me and contribute to this journey that I am on. I am also thankful if I can elevate them on their journey as well.

One more thing Jeff Bridges said in his speech, he said, “Tag, you’re it.” From the childhood game of tag, once you are touched, you must run around and touch someone else to “be it.” You are “it,” the chosen one. You are the next person to make a difference and to change the course of everything. No matter how small, you have the power. Be thankful and start with “you are alive, man” and move on to “tag, you are it.”

The Dude abides.

To watch Jeff Bridges full acceptance speech busting with thanks for every person that has helped him along the way, click here!