Happy Thanksgiving week! I love this time of year and think it is quite fitting that right before the “season of giving,” we celebrate Thanksgiving, a holiday that is all about gratitude. One of the biggest life changes any of us can make, is to recognize, give thanks, and celebrate all the good things we have in this life. It is not always easy and sometimes at the end of a hard day the only thing I feel grateful for is that the day is over!
Several years ago, I was whining to my mother-in-law about all the things I didn’t have and wished I had and would probably never have. Life was hard at that time, but I had so many things to be grateful for…a healthy body, my education, amazing opportunities, a wonderful husband, four healthy daughters, a home, and a million other things. But I still whined and complained. My mother-in-law’s response to me was life changing. It wasn’t anything new, but my mind and heart were open at that moment and I was ready for a change. She simply said, “If you don’t learn to be grateful for what you have, it might be taken away from you.” I knew that as much as I wanted, I would never sacrifice what I already had to fill those wants. So, I learned to be grateful for what I had. It was not an easy process, and sometimes I still want to throw a tantrum because my life doesn’t look the way I wish it did. But most of the time, I am simply grateful.
Here are a few things that helped me with this life change:
-A gratitude journal.
-This book and this book.
-Offering prayers of gratitude.
-Scheduling a weekly session for writing “thank you” cards.
-Really teaching my children about gratitude.
-Taking time to think about and pray for others.
-Taking time to help others.
-Slowing down, breathing, and reflecting on what I am grateful for at that moment.
How about you? Do you have any great ideas for changing your life with gratitude?