Thanksgiving is upon us! For many, this holiday is a time to gather with friends and family to say thank you for all of our many blessings. And what a beautiful time of year it is to give thanks!
Personally, my heart is filled with thanksgiving. I have a healthy family (both immediate and extended) who are blessings to our home and gifts from God.
I have dear friends who support and encourage me and I have beautiful clients who bless me with their strength, determination and fighting willpower to make it a year where they strive for and meet their goals. For all of this, I couldn’t be more grateful!
Each of us has so many blessings to be thankful for. We truly are “rich” as we ponder all that is valuable and meaningful in our lives.
While most of us know we are “rich” in blessings, we don’t always feel this way. There are days (sometimes too many to count) where we feel anything but grateful and blessed.
We feel sad, disappointed, frustrated, and confused with circumstances and people. These are the days when it is hard to count our blessings. But, these are exactly the moments when we need to be intentional to do so. And here is why.
Researchers have found positive associations between gratitude and well being. Not surprisingly, the majority of research suggests that expressing gratitude leads to increased well being and life satisfaction.
When we spend time looking for blessings in our lives and thanking God for them, our perspectives and daily attitudes shift to the positive and we spend more of our days living a life filled with thanksgiving rather than regrets, comparisons, and “why me” living.
Let me run that by you again. Being intentional about cultivating gratitude improves your life and well being. It is that simple.
It doesn’t feel simple, however, when you are having a crummy day. Have you ever noticed how hard it is to find the positives, the gems in the rubbish, on those days?
Recently, I came across a gratitude exercise that has helped me tremendously. I pray that it might help you remember to:
“Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus from you. (1 Thessalonians 5:18; emphasis added to all).
Take a piece of paper. Fold it vertically. On one side of the paper write the negative talk/situation/circumstance that is holding you captive. Once you get all the “junk” out of your brain, flip the paper over and write what you are thankful for as it relates to each statement.
Then, tear the paper in half and throw away the negative statements. You are now left with your statements of gratitude and thanksgiving. Post this paper in a location where you can see it and meditate on it frequently throughout the day.
This exercise is so simple and yet so effective. It has helped me turn crummy days into gratitude days. Over the course of this next week, I challenge you to try this exercise. Why? Because there is no better way to live than to live a life filled with gratitude.
With this, I say “Happy Thanksgiving!” I am thankful for each and every one of you. There is no better blessing, for me, than to be able to help others to thrive through life!
Praying you through,
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