A Little Gratitude Goes a Long Way

For many of us, Thanksgiving is the official start of holiday insanity. ‘Tis the season to stuff our faces silly with turkey and all the trimmings … and to gain 5-10 pounds in the process. `Tis the season to run around like headless chickens amidst the crowds of crazed shoppers on “Black Friday.”

‘Tis the season to eat too much, spend too much, do too much and rest too little.

But Thanksgiving is also the start of the season when folks tend to be a bit nicer than usual. ‘Tis the season of giving as well as receiving. ‘Tis the season that anticipates beauty and song. ‘Tis the season to be better than we are.

Which kind of holiday season would you rather experience? Either one is equally possible. You can either wallow in the madness and get ready for a 2011 collapse, or determine to keep joy in your heart all season long.

Choosing joy can be made all the easier by recalling the deeper meaning of Thanksgiving. `Tis the season to be grateful. Instead of allowing Thanksgiving to become just another source of stress and frustration, use it as an excuse to attend to what you value most.

Many of us simply need to stop whining about what we don’t have and pay attention to our many gifts! A little gratitude goes a long way!

Begin the holidays by listing all the things for which you’re grateful. Start with daily blessings and work your way through the past week, month and year. If you’re like many of us, you’ll be gently reminded of how wonderful your life really is.

Personally, I am grateful for friends and family who keep me sane when I am going crazy and drive me nuts when life becomes too bland. I am grateful for my canine “alarm clocks” who wake me up each morning with their cold noses and warm hearts.

I’m grateful for unexpected humor that makes me chuckle to myself for days. I treasure those startling moments of humanity that renew my faith and optimism for the future.

I’m grateful for good work, a good challenge and a good cause to promote. I appreciate the efforts of all persons who are willing to actively put their lives on the line for the people and things they value most.

I cherish the creativity of children and the hope that dwells in their imaginations.

I’m grateful for good food for my body and soul, and the health and strength it creates. I daily relish the fact that my body does what I ask it to do.

I’m grateful to live in a country where (at least ideally) community is of at least as much value as individual talent and strength… and vice versa. I’m grateful that in spite of radical and often stark and childish differences, this country is still capable of healing after a fall.

I am grateful for divine guidance, costly grace and love freely given. I am grateful to and for dedicated teachers and profound wisdom.

I am grateful to be a gifted woman and to be more aware of my giftedness than I have ever been. I am happy to have finally attained a level of confidence and determination that increasingly does justice to these gifts. I am grateful that saying this does not make me feel proud or arrogant … just more grateful!

What are you grateful for? Whatever is it, start your holiday season by celebrating it! Peace! And Happy Thanksgiving!

Dr. Janice Staab is a philosophical counselor and life coach. For more information on her services or to schedule your free consultation, e-mail info@lifesignscoaching.com. You can also check out her Web site at www.lifesignscoaching.com.

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