The greatest gift one can give is thanksgiving. In giving gifts, we give what we can spare,
but in giving thanks we give ourselves. ~ Br. David Steindl-Rast

What if you discovered that living with awareness and intention — focusing on what makes you feel most alive — allows you to: live longer; experience joy; inspire others; hold pain and grief with compassion; and deepen love, generosity, and respect for all life?

Throughout this season of Thanksgiving we invite you to explore ways to experience grateful living as a way of life, not simply something we celebrate once a year.

Enjoy A Grateful Day!

To begin, we encourage you to watch A Grateful Day (the video below) and consider sharing it with others. Then, explore the practices that follow on your own or with family and friends…

 

Practices to Cultivate A Truly Grateful Thanksgiving:

Notice all of the factors that go into your travels this week: A working vehicle, the ability to drive, public transportation, infrastructure, gasoline and gas stations, laws and devices that help keep everyone safe. How might you honor these gifts?


Each day, tell someone in your life you appreciate them. You might even try it with someone you’re struggling with interpersonally. How does it feel to verbally express your appreciation for someone? What happens in your body and your heart? How does it impact your relationship with this person?


Take time to wholeheartedly express gratitude for all of the people who serve you in some way. Rather than a quick thank you, explore what it feels like to pause, smile, make eye contact, perhaps even steal a glance at someone’s name tag so that you can include their name when you say “Thank you.” Wish them well and mean it. How does this shift your experience of receiving? How does the practice shift your experience of thanking others?


Try to savor every moment. Focus especially on those moments when completing tasks that may feel mundane or tiresome. Open up and lean into every moment of travel, red lights and all; every task of cleaning, grease-stained and all; every step of cooking, vegetable-peeling and all; every interaction with another person, less-than-easy and all. How might gratefulness change your perspective on experiences that might feel like a “chore”? How can you find joy in every moment, both challenging and pleasurable?


For more ways to cultivate and express gratefulness, please visit our Practice Space to send a Thanksgiving eCard, Light a Candle, and respond to our Daily Question. You might also enjoy our Grateful Conversation Starters — questions that help spark meaningful conversations at holiday gatherings or other occasions throughout the year.


And we would love to hear from you! Please share any ideas you might have to deepen our experience and appreciation this Thanksgiving in the reflection area below…


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