Thanksgiving has always been my favorite holiday. I have nostalgic memories of watching the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade and eating my mom’s homemade rolls, my aunts olives and my grandmas cinnamon pie crust (writing that made me miss her so much). It’s the holiday of joyful anticipation and savoring the simple but profound gift of gratitude. Gratitude has been known to be the antidote for anxiety because it lights up the pleasure centers of the brain. If your gratitude list is long, short or none existent, take a few things from the list below that I believe everyone can give thanks for.
It’s so easy to take this for granted but if you’re living then you’re breathing and that is a gift. If you’re in Northern California or located anywhere near a recent fire you understand the magnitude of this gift even more when your air is comprised. I follow this inspiring person on Instagram Caleigh Haber @fight2breathe who constantly reminds me how precious and sacred life is. Caleigh has cystic fibrosis and has spent a large portion of her life in hospitals just trying to breathe. She’s currently in the hospital with more complications from her double lung transplant but she remains a hopeful fighter who is more grateful for life than anyone else I know.
If you’re reading this you probably have a roof over your head and something to warm to wrap yourself up in….I know I take this for granted when I think I need a bigger or more stylish house. So take some time today to be thankful for whatever your shelter looks like.
That Every Day Is New:
No matter how bad yesterday or today was tomorrow is new and you have a choice for how you want to live it…everything is a choice and perspective changes things.
When you see others succeed instead of being envious channel that energy into believing that there are similar if not better opportunities out there for you. Be happy for others and hopeful for what is to come in your own life. When you believe good things will happen to you and you do good work, good things will come.
The Sunrise and Sunset:
It’s available for every to see…take it as a beautiful masterpiece of art painted just for you and a symbol that every day is new.
Not only is nature beautiful and free for all, Huffington Post says this about it:
“Marshes, mangroves, coral and oyster reefs can help protect people and businesses from destruction caused by hurricanes and flooding.
We know it may sound odd that nature can safeguard us from natural disasters. But we know it works, because we’ve studied it. Our research found that adding green infrastructure to more conventional infrastructure, such as dykes and levees, can help mitigate damage and loss.”
Even more reason to protect and take care of mother earth!
The very fact that you can choose to be optimistic instead of pessimistic is reason to be thankful. Choose to see the glass half full instead of half empty even if you have to fake it at first.
Glendora Psychologists say this: “Good friends are vitally important to your mental health and to the quality of your life. To live and to love are inseparable from each other. Friendship is an opportunity to love, to learn about yourself, to mature as a human being, and to open up to the full experience of life. To seek true friendship, you must have the courage to risk all that you are. You must have the courage to walk through your fear of emotional intimacy and let another person know who you really are on the inside. On a very practical level, you must be willing to invest the necessary time and effort to develop, nourish, and maintain the bonds of a strong relationship.” Friendship is a gift to give thanks for!
It’s easier than frowning, it’s free and you can give them out to everyone and instantly make someone feel good.
The Present Moment:
The present moment might be good, bad or indifferent for you but it’s still yours and still a sign that you’re living and can make good choices for your life.
Everyone can grow and change if they want to. List all ways you’ve seen yourself grow and improve in life interpersonally and relationally and give thanks for this hard work.
Even if you don’t have kids look at a child’s face and remember how it felt to be young and innocent.
There is so much beauty in ancient traditions…research your family lineage and discover some of their ancient traditions that you can resurrect in your own family.
I’m just so thankful for modern technology that connects us more from healthcare to social media…choose to see the good in these modern times.