Truly thankful, every day

Thanksgiving is a few short days away, and my inbox is already full of messages related to the holiday. I love that this moment on the calendar prompts so many people to say how much they appreciate their clients and friends, and to share good wishes.

Thanksgiving is a lovely time to focus on gratitude, as well as the power of gratitude in our lives. I have learned that when I am mindful of gratitude every day of the year my life is enriched.

Beyond my awareness of how fortunate I am to have a wonderful family, that all of my physical needs met, that I am in good health, have so many dear friends and do work that I love, I have come to appreciate much that I used to miss.

Most of us move at warp speed through our days, rarely slowing down to notice the small wonders around us. We miss so many things that we can savor in our routine lives. When I keep a list of 12 things for which I am grateful on a daily basis, I recall many sweet and special moments that would otherwise go unnoticed. My gratitude list often includes things like someone holding open a door when I am carrying packages, or smiling with warmth while standing in a line, or making a helpful suggestion that enhanced my day. It includes the delight I felt watching a flock of birds soar against the sky, or the taste of an especially delicious cup of tea, or the sound of a little child giggling. When I am aware of and reflect on all of the small things that brighten my day I can hold the memories of those moments. And, the positive emotions help me cope with any challenges I may be facing. No matter what, I treasure the beauty and abundance in my life.

Whatever you have planned for Thanksgiving Day I hope you will have many happy moments to savor. I hope, too, that you will consider developing a gratitude practice of your own, to keep the holiday spirit alive every day. It requires slowing down just a little, but I predict that you’ll get a lot back in return.