Learning to be Grateful

In the U.S. with Thanksgiving approaching there is a lot of focus on gratitude.  You may have noticed Espirational quotes on gratitude this month.  While taking time to intentionally be grateful is never a bad thing, I see the ultimate goal as recognizing things to be grateful for and expressing gratitude to not only God but those around us without even realizing we are doing it.

I have to admit I am not there yet but I’m getting better.  I’m learning to say “thank you” for those little things we tend to take for granted like Bob doing the laundry, the cashier at the grocery store being pleasant and giving out big smiles or even neighbors inquiring about Bob’s health.  Sometimes I still have to remind myself how blessed we are to live at the lake.

Do you have a regular routine during November of making a daily gratitude list, putting change in a blessing bank to donate to charity, or writing letters to express your gratitude to people who have had a powerful impact on your life?  Consider continuing these practices throughout the year.  Take time to reflect on what you have to be grateful for.  Let’s make gratitude a part of daily life, not just something to think about during the month of November.





7 thoughts on “Learning to be Grateful”

  1. I wrote an article for work yesterday about a new study showing how happiness in adulthood has declined. One portion of the research really stuck with me:

    “American culture has increasingly emphasized high expectations and following your dreams– things that feel good when you’re young. However, the average mature adult has realized that their dreams might not be fulfilled, and less happiness is the inevitable result. Mature adults in previous eras might not have expected so much, but expectations are now so high they can’t be met.”

    I spent the rest of the day trying to find joy in the smaller things. I went to bed feeling much lighter of spirit.

    1. A good point. I worry about young people being devastated when their dreams don’t work out (sometimes they just don’t) because there is so much pressure to follow your dreams and make them happen. I hadn’t thought about older folks. Living in a 50+ community though I think this might explain a few things.

      I’m at the point in my life that I thank God a few of my “dreams” from my younger days didn’t work out. When dreams don’t happen it doesn’t mean we are a failure, it may just mean it wasn’t the right dream. It’s also not a good idea to devote so much time and energy to one area of life, hope, dream, goal, etc. that we let the life that is happening now pass us right on by.

      Thanks for the interesting comment.

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