How to Embrace the Spirit of Gratitude This Thanksgiving

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This time of year many of us are thinking about what we are most thankful for.  It’s almost Thanksgiving, and we want to know, what are your traditions? What are you most thankful for in your life? There’s a great line from the poet William Blake that comes to mind, which says: “Gratitude is heaven itself.”

 

For many of us, Thanksgiving is a stressful time of year that is both time-consuming and financially straining. To one extreme it is the time of year to cherish and spend time with family, to cook and bake, decorate and–of course–be Thankful! To the other extreme and what seems like the extreme many are experiencing, Thanksgiving is full of stress. It’s a  rush of added work on top of the loads of work we have already. It’s driving and coordinating and fighting through masses of people to a destination you don’t understand.

 

This year, we are here to tell you that it doesn’t have to be that way. Nor should it.

 

“Gratitude is heaven itself.” -William Blake There is a slight difference between the act of being thankful and deep emotions of gratitude. Gratitude is an emotion that is felt from within.  Those who have gratitude are thankful, but not all those expressing thanks have emotions of gratitude.

 

There’s a good article on Elephant Journal, The Hidden Power of Gratitude whereby the writer explains:

 

There are some people who we may feel that they have done so much for us that we will never be able to repay them in time or money as their effort has been priceless; the only way we can repay them is by expressing gratitude.

 

Therefore, gratitude becomes one of the most valuable virtues we can have. It supersedes financial or material wealth as with just one meaningful heartfelt word we can repay someone for all that they have done.

 

Gratitude is a powerful force that runs through the human spirit. If nothing else, Thanksgiving is taking the time to give passage to the force itself and allow it to consume us in a positive light.

 

It’s not gluttony and corporate greed. It’s time, hard work, careful preparation, and an offering to those we hold most dear. It’s a celebration of living and being thankful for all that the world has given.  

 

“Some people are always grumbling because roses have thorns; I am thankful that thorns have roses.” -Alphonse Karr

When you become truly gracious, something happens to your thinking after. There’s a shift in your thought process. When you are thankful for the roses, the thorns don’t seem so bad. When you are thankful for the good things in your life, the bad things, however bad, become just a little more bearable than they were to you before.

 

A 2017 Study from UC Berkeley took 300 students entering into counseling and split them into two groups, those given the task of writing letters of gratitude and those who were not. Here’s what the said regarding the effects of gratitude on the brain. In the end, one of the findings revealed the possibility that “simply expressing gratitude may have lasting effects on the brain.”

 

“Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all the others.” -Cicero

Another finding of the 2017 study indicates that those in the study who participated in gratitude also experience more relief from their suffering- more joy and more positive emotions overall. Gratitude is a gift both given to you and to others when being experienced. The gift that keeps giving and never stops.

 

Make a list of all the things you are most grateful for. Remember to cherish your time and be thankful for the offerings of the Earth. Share in your gratitude with others, especially those you love most.

 

We are grateful for all our amazing readers that have helped create Love Wide Open and wish you all a gratitude-filled Thanksgiving.

Related Articles: How to Use Gratitude To Supercharge The Law Of Attraction

12 Things To Tell Yourself When You Think You’re Not Good Enough

©Love Wide Open

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