This is Thanksgiving week in the U.S. It’s a time when many of us remember to feel and express gratitude. It seems frivolous in 2020—especially when you recall that more than 259,000 U.S. residents and over 1.4 million worldwide have died of COVID-19. Plus, at home and across the world, there are racial injustices and rampant abuses of power, not to mention the political messes. Yet, perhaps this is the perfect time to visit your gratitude.
Showing Thanks Makes Others Happy
We all want to be noticed. It’s part of our nature. I’ll be you’ve noticed that being ignored doesn’t feel good. Being noticed means that you are of value. Even if it’s only for holding the door open for the elderly man with his hands full. Being noticed, being thanked feels good.
When you take a moment out of your day to recognize someone for being there—it makes them feel good. A simple thank you to the clerk at the store, the postal service worker, the nurse at the clinic, or your neighbor will be appreciated and remembered. Watch them smile. Bet it makes you smile, too.
Being Thankful Makes You a More Positive Person
Gratitude doesn’t have to be overwhelming. You don’t have to bounce around and effuse thankfulness all over the place. Simply appreciating the things and people around you is enough. That appreciation promotes optimism.
Feeling thankful reduces toxic emotions like envy, jealousy, resentment, and frustration. According to Psychology Today, practicing gratitude increases happiness and reduces depression.
When you look for the things you appreciate, you realize how much you have. It’s fun to enumerate those things. Look at the 20 Weird Things I’m Grateful For.
Gratitude Improves Physical Health
Did you know grateful people report fewer aches and pains? Appreciating your physical health also means you probably take better care of yourself. According to MayoClinic.Org, practicing thankfulness improves sleep, boosts your immunity, and decreases your risk of disease.
A little gratitude each day decreases stress and increases resilience. Even during the worst times.
Find Your Gratitude
Don’t feel bad is you can’t always feel grateful. Even an optimist like me can struggle to remain grateful and positive during the kinds of stressors we’ve had this year. But you can find things you’re grateful for—all you have to do is look.
When I look around me, I see many things for which I’m grateful.
- My two yorkies are sometimes annoying, but an endless supply of affection and entertainment.
- My office—it’s not big and it’s not fancy—but it’s a space where I can work.
- Having a roof over my head. There are so many who don’t have that luxury.
- Clean water to drink.
- And so many other things! And that’s not counting the most important things—friends and family and acquaintances. I am feeling grateful, thankful, and blessed.
I am always amazed that other people read my posts. It delights me and energizes me to write better posts. And when you comment or share my posts—I am so very grateful. Thank you for joining me here.
Whether you’re having a Thanksgiving or a routine Thursday, my wish is that you feel the power of gratitude in your day, your week, and your life.
I hope you practice gratitude every day. Remember, it reduces stress and toxic emotions. So now is the perfect time to visit your gratitude. And please look around the room you’re in right now and comment below about one thing in that room that you are grateful to have.