The United States celebrated Thanksgiving last Thursday, November 23, 2020, which means now it’s time for gratitude after Thanksgiving.
- Thanks make a difference
- Gratitude can help you appreciate what you have
- Thankfulness is for every day
Saying Thank You
There has been a lot going on in 2020, that’s safe to say. From economic upheaval, to delayed election results, to civil unrest, and more, it’s definitely been a year unlike any other. There may have been personal losses of money due to stock and investment fluctuations. There may have been loss of life due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
Where does one begin to look for the bright sides? It can be a heavy feeling, living through this all, and stressful to everyone involved, whether they are isolating or not, working or not, schooling or not. But there are ways to work through the muddy sensation. One of the best ways to appreciate what you have is through the practice of gratitude.
Saying “Thank you” can make a big difference in your world.
What Are You Thankful For?
There’s a saying that “if you’ve got family, you’ve got everything.” In many cases it’s true. If your family is safe, loving, and healthy, you are way ahead of many, many people. This doesn’t mean you can’t be grateful for other things as well. And it doesn’t mean that you can’t, or your family can’t, want other things. It’s about appreciation of what you do have, and it’s still ok to want more.
Another saying posits, “Gratitude turns what we have into enough.” And it’s important to take stock of what we already have in life. A warm place to live, a family that cares about us, maybe a pet that adores us, money to spend, save, or tithe, a job that supports us financially, perhaps a dream that sustains us emotionally.
It can be tough to take a step back and really appreciate what we have, but this is a great time of year to do so.
Holidays Of Gratitude
There are dozens of holidays celebrated between Halloween and the end of the calendar year. Religious ones, secular ones, made up ones from literature and video games, the list goes on and on. Not all of them involve being thankful directly, but many of them do, and many more are appreciative of the fact that the days are getting shorter, the darkness of winter is coming, and the earth will be going through its diurnal journey around the sun as it always does.
What does that mean for celebrants of the various holidays? In a broad, very general way, it simply means that it’s a time to focus on the great things we all have and celebrate the people making this journey around the sun with us. Sometimes there’s some religious significance sprinkled in, sometimes gifts are given or exchanged.
Gratitude Every Day
Being grateful every day can feel like a challenge sometimes, but is one of the best things you can do for your health. Ask a life coach or religious leader, and you’ll hear that appreciating what we have is key. This can be accomplished in a number of ways but one of the best is to make a daily listing of things that one is grateful for each day. From children’s smiles to stock market wins, there are a million things that make up our day. Not all of them are pleasant but if the focus is not on what’s going well, that can shape the whole day.
Focusing on what we appreciate makes humans view their world as a place inherently good, with positivity and joy. That make the day brighter simply by being what it is.