Gratitude: Get Yourself Some!


Sometimes being thankful takes practice. It is so easy to see the things that are wrong with our lives, or notice the blessings of others while overlooking our own, but giving thanks is wonderful thing. Gratitude is a feeling that eases so many disappointments, and keeping track of the good things in our lives improves mood and overall mental health. In this season where nightfall comes too early, and cold weather keeps many indoors, a bright spin on our days cannot be a bad thing.

Many people take to Facebook during the month of November to share one thing daily they are thankful for. I have done this in years past, and am sitting out this year, having gotten all from the exercise I can the previous three years. I truly feel I can see the bounty of blessings I have received, and now I’m enjoying reading everyone else’s thankfulness.

I am still thankful, even though it may not be “Facebook official.” Often, my gratitude runs deep. My family, my health, my marriage, and my faith are the anchors that keep me grounded. Some days, I am thankful for hot coffee, cartoons, and the perfect cocktail. Life is full of wonderful things worth celebrating, and paying attention to those things can really change attitudes.

Today I am thankful for the many friends and family members who have invested both time and money to fly across the country to visit us here in Connecticut, most recently my mother. I have amazing people in my life, and sometimes it is truly painful to be so far away from them. The gratitude I feel when we have a house filled with loved ones from home helps sustain me between visits, and makes wonderful memories for my children.

Some people keep gratitude journals to document their gratefulness year round. Others share what they are thankful for around the dinner table. One friend writes down her gratitude and puts it in a bowl. Her children do the same, and they read them all on Thanksgiving. I love the idea of teaching the kids to recognize and share thankfulness. A month of focusing on positive things always opens my eyes. Try it, and tell me why you are thankful!

17 thoughts on “Gratitude: Get Yourself Some!

  1. Being away from family is hard and I agree visits from loved ones are the only way to make it through. This made me tear up for numerous reasons but most of all made me really appreciate airplanes and the ease of traveling these days!

  2. I don’t do the 30 days of gratefulness, either. Not because I’m not, but because I really make an effort to TRY (key word) to be grateful year round. Also I suck at consistency.

    I agree with you that it can literally be physically painful to live away from family and everything familiar that goes with it. I am fresh off a 2 month stretch of having numerous friends and family come visit and, while you’d think that would “hold me over” for a while, I sit here and find myself more homesick than usual. So, right now I’m thankful that we decided to spend the money (and were able!) to go home for Thanksgiving. It can’t get here soon enough.

    1. I have been home three times this year already and will do so again for Christmas. It helps saying goodbye when I know it’s only for a few months, but like you, it makes me just WANT TO BE THERE ALL THE TIME ALREADY.

  3. I love every single thing about this post, especially “Gratitude is a feeling that eases so many disappointments.” I, too, am thankful for hot coffee and the perfect cocktail. I learned years ago that when we start to look at what some consider the “small things” (which are actually rather big), life just looks a whole lot more beautiful. When people tell me they’re unsure of what they have to be thankful for, I start with the basics: You can walk. You can talk. Some people can’t. It’s an eye-opener, for sure! Thanks for this profound post!

    1. Thanks, Shay. Focusing on the big and little blessings has changed my life for the better. I wish everyone could do that for themselves.

    1. You don’t do it all the time because you are blogging now. At least that’s why I slowed down on my personal journaling!

  4. Very well written friend. I am thankful you share your way with words all year round. It makes not seeing your pretty face a little less sad. Keep the funny going.

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