Here is the US, this week and month have been focused on our holiday of Thanksgiving. It is a time in our lives where we strive to remain focused on those things in our lives that we are grateful for and reaffirm our ideals of family and connection. It is a time of joy and stress all rolled into a chaotic ball of emotions and obligations. To me, it is a farce. I firmly believe that if you are only thinking about the things that you are grateful for, for one dear, one week or one month out of the entire year, you are making your life a darker and sadder place. This is an activity that should be developed and practiced all year long and at every opportunity. Thanksgiving should be every day, not just once a year.
So it is time to make that the case in our own lives, it is time to step forward and express our gratitude for those things in life that bring us joy and it is time to do this over and over again throughout the year. The first step is to change our mindset during the course of the year. During this month, we focus on those things that bring us joy, but that mindset is not limited to this month of the year; it is something that we can take with us every day. The way that I do this is that I keep a gratitude log, a book where I sit down every day and focus on those things in my life that bring me joy, that I am grateful for and I write them down to make the physical and give them that additional strength.
The next step is the hard part for many of us. We need to learn to express that gratitude that we are cultivating and let those around us know about it. Do you love the way your wife has a cup of coffee ready for you each morning, express that gratitude to her whether is it Thanksgiving or a Tuesday in June. It is important to take these steps in our lives and it makes the world around us just a little better as we share our gratitude mindset with those we love. Doing this on a constant basis also makes the impact real and lasting. If you tell someone how grateful you are for what they do for you once a year, when the season predicates it, then the sentiment can be passed off as just a season obligation. If you do it on a constant basis over the year with real feeling and vulnerability, then it will become real to the person you are grateful for and will improve their lives.
Finally, this mindset will keep you looking for those great things in your life instead of seeing the negative and damaging things. You will see the world in a light that amplifies those wonders and joys instead of relegating them to a footnote in your day. It will change your outlook on life in profound ways.
So take some time today and find out what you are grateful for and share it with us in the comments. Spread that joy that you feel and let the world become a better place even by just a little bit.