Editor’s note: Derek Andersen is the founder of Startup Grind, a 35-city event series hosted in 15-countries that educates, inspires, and connects entrepreneurs. He founded Commonred (Acquired by Income.com) and is ex-Electronic Arts.
Today is Thanksgiving, a holiday where Americans and a few other countries celebrate and remember everything we have to be grateful for. In the daily grind it’s hard to step back and appreciate how lucky we are to be entrepreneurs. Today seemed like an appropriate time so here are the 42 things I am most grateful for as an entrepreneur in 2012.
1. Still being excited to work past 1 a.m.
2. My spouse continues to support the dream despite all the risk and uncertainty.
3. Knowing that Silicon Valley can’t be captured in a cable TV show.
4. We finally won’t have to talk about Color anymore.
6. Products like Basecamp, Stripe, Github, SendGrid, Google Apps, MailChimp, Square, Eventbrite, MacBook, MSFT Office, and Gmail that keep our businesses running.
7. Not having a 9 to 5.
8. Checks to cash.
9. Friends who throw your startup a bone when you desperately need it.
10. I can operate a global company from my laptop.
11. MC Hammer and PSY hooked up.
12. Parents that are proud of their kid’s startup.
13. TechCrunch’s triumphant return earlier this year has stuck.
14. Cofounders who push you to your best with their example.
16. The freedom to operate and create a business of your choosing.
17. Arrington and MG are back on TechCrunch.
18. Thoughtful design.
20. Founders around the world working tirelessly to build their local community.
21. No new incubators have launched in the past few months.
22. Startups measured not by the amount they’ve raised but by the traction they’ve received.
23. Engineers who aren’t jerks.
24. Business guys who act like engineers.
25. Investors and shareholders who understand no one is always right.
26. Max Woolf’s comments.
27. People that give without expectations or strings.
28. Thank you emails from customers.
29. Never being accused of growth hacking.
30. Over delivering.
31. Customers that pay for products.
32. Resources like Kauffman Foundation, AngelList, Stanford, Startup School, SFciti, and Startup Weekend that help entrepreneurs.
33. Kids who hug and kiss you regardless of how early you leave or late you come home.
34. Silicon Valley state of mind.
35. When the guy worth 100x the other guy picks up the lunch tab without an awkward pause.
36. Product market fit.
37. Millionaires that drive beat-up old cars.
38. Chris Dixon moving to California.
39. Customers that make life easier, not harder.
41. Founders who will never give up.
42. My startup is alive to fight another day, week, and month. What more could I ask for?
List the things you’re thankful for in the comments below. Happy turkey day.