In the Spirit of Giving Thanks

It’s that time of year filled with family, friends, happiness, and gratefulness. Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the festive holiday season. All over the country, families and friends gather around tables, passing turkey, mashed potatoes and homemade stuffing. Homes are filled with laughter, joy and holiday spirit. It is so much more than just a day off from the 9am -5pm routine and eating a large meal. Thanksgiving is a time to be thankful and appreciate what you have been given in your life.

Why is it that we only reflect at this time of year? What about the other eleven months out of the year? It’s simple to look around your home and list off items and people that you are thankful to have in your life. Of course, we are all thankful for our family, friends and loved ones. We are thankful to have a house, electricity, and a car. I’m not trying to downplay the importance of these things, as there are many less fortunate people who do not have the opportunity to have them. However, these statements are so vague and impersonal that the true meaning is lost. I believe we should be thankful for moments, memories, and experiences over things. Why are you thankful for your house? Yes, we all need shelter to survive, but that is not what makes a house a home. A house is just a thing without a memory or emotional connection to it. Having a home means your extended family can all gather together and it is a safe place to tuck your children in at night. It’s filled with important people, memories, emotions, special moments, milestones, and so much more. These are the little things that happen each and every day. The things that you don’t consciously think about. The things that you are truly thankful for but often take for granted without even realizing it.

30 Moments I am Thankful For Everyday:

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  1. I am thankful that I get to kiss my husband before I fall asleep each night and again every morning when I wake up.
  2. I am thankful that I get to tell my parents that I love them at the end of a phone conversation and when I see them in person.
  3. I am thankful for the friends that I can tag in Facebook memes all day, but will also be the ones to pick up the phone when I am in need.
  4. I am thankful for my cat who gives me unconditional love and keeps me company every night after work.
  5. I am thankful to have a support system to encourage me when I start something new and to catch me if I fail.
  6. I am thankful to have a sibling who will by my friend for a lifetime and will always have memories in common with me.
  7. I am thankful to be employed and have the opportunity to earn an income each morning when I wake up, even though most days it’s hard to get out of bed.
  8. I am thankful that I can afford to go to the grocery store and buy things that I want but don’t necessarily need.
  9. I am thankful for all the people in our lives that came to our wedding this year to support our marriage and shared in our special day.
  10. I am thankful to have people in my life that will call and check up on me to see how I’m doing.
  11. I am thankful to have a beautiful home where I can lay my head down each night and feel at peace.
  12. I am thankful that I able to feel safe and secure in my home and place of work.
  13. I am thankful for the things and moments that make me laugh and smile.
  14. I am thankful that I am healthy and have the energy to get out of bed each morning and feel no pain.
  15. I am thankful for all of the new family members I have gained this year and for our futures together.
  16. I am thankful to be forgiven even at times when I haven’t earned it.
  17. I am thankful to be heard when I have something that I need to say.
  18. I am thankful when I get home after a long day and dinner has already been started.
  19. I am thankful for weekends and relaxation in times of stress.
  20. I am thankful for encouraging words when I am ready to quit and have lost hope.
  21. I am thankful to receive help when I don’t know what to do or how to do it.
  22. I am thankful for guidance and wisdom when I don’t know what my next step is.
  23. I am thankful for the ability to be myself and feel comfortable with who I am.
  24. I am thankful for those who listen to me when I feel the need to vent and complain after a bad day.
  25. I am thankful for the people in my life who will dry my tears and comfort me when I am hurting.
  26. I am thankful for those who know exactly what to say when I need to hear it the most.
  27. I am thankful for honesty and straightforwardness when I need advice.
  28. I am thankful for the people who perform favors for me without expecting anything in return.
  29. I am thankful for compliments and kindness from strangers that brighten my day.
  30. I am thankful to have the freedom to choose where I want to live, where I want to work, what I want to eat, where I want to go, and so many more choices I am able to make myself.

We should not just show our appreciation on day 327, but also on the other 364 days out of the year. Challenge yourself to find something or some moment that you are thankful for each and every day, no matter how small or insignificant. Below are 6 methods for showing gratitude all year round.

  1. Write down something you are thankful for each day. Start a journal and  record something everyday or create a decorative board that can be added to over time.
  2. Practice positive thinking each day. If you allow yourself to get caught up in what is not going well, you won’t be able to appreciate what was good. Instead of focusing all of your attention on something that went wrong, work on directing your attention towards what went right.
  3. Proactively show the people in your life that you care. Say thank you often and do kind things or them without expecting reciprocation.
  4. Help out your local community. Create a life for the less fortunate that they will be thankful and appreciative of.
  5. Pay it forward. Show kindness to strangers by paying for their groceries or leave a large tip for your waiter. Something that comes from the heart is sure to make their day.
  6. Make it a daily habit to take a relaxing bath or lay awake for 10 extra minutes each night and reflect on the day. Set aside time to clear your mind and be appreciative. Set goals to work on in the future.

Happy Thanksgiving! I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe holiday. Let me know what you’re thankful for this season in the comment below. Limpert in Leopard will be back with regular posts next week!

Until next time.

XOXO

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