“I am grateful for what I am and have. My thanksgiving is perpetual. It is surprising how contented one can be with nothing definite – only a sense of existence. My breath is sweet to me. Oh how I laugh when I think of my vague indefinite riches. No run on my bank can drain it, for my wealth is not possession but enjoyment.” -Henry David Thoreau
One of the simplest tools I have found to improve my appreciation for all that is going well but I often forget is a gratitude journal. I first heard about this concept from Sarah Ban Breathnach’s widely successful book Simple Abundance: A Day Book of Joy and Comfort released more than 13 years ago, and while my consistency leaves much to be desired, it is during those days when I am throwing my hands up in frustration that even without a journal, I am making a mental list of all that I need to feel thankful for.
While I know that many of my readers are from around the world and don’t officially celebrate Thanksgiving, it is the daily habit regardless of a date on a calendar to give thanks that is a single powerful ingredient to improving the quality of our lives. For when we remind ourselves of the riches we glance over and take for granted out of habit, we shift our mood and attitude which ultimately effects the environment in which we spend our days.
Today and everyday, regardless of the comparisons that the media and society incessantly toss in our laps assuring us that we don’t have enough, aren’t enough or have not done enough, find your calm, take a breath and remind yourself that none of these external statements are true. The riches that you have in your life at this precise moment are immense, and so long as you appreciate what you have, you will attract more amazing riches to be thankful for.
Perhaps you too want to create a gratitude journal, or keep a daily list on your smart phone to readily access whenever you need a reminder during trying days. While out shopping this busy holiday weekend, take some time to pick up a small journal just for yourself, and find time each day to list 1-3 things that you are thankful for. Some days your list will be longer, and on those days when it seems nothing can be placed on your list, start with my list below.
The basics and foundation of further success and comfort:
1. Good Health
2. Clean Water
3. Eyes to See
4. Nerves to Feel
5. A Voice to Speak
6. A Home for Warmth and Protection
7. Food in the Refrigerator
8. Time to Rest
And since Thanksgiving is just one day away and my appetite has been dreaming and fantasizing all week long about the bounty waiting to be enjoyed tomorrow, here area few tables of inspiration to put you in the festive mood. Enjoy!
If you are traveling this week, have a safe and enjoyable trek, and if you are in the middle of your work week, you’re almost there. I can’t express enough how thankful I am for the readers of TSLL and all of the amazing delights, smiles and moments you have brought me over these past four years. Happy Thanksgiving. And be sure to stop by later today for a long list of Black
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