The month of Thanksgiving has arrived, and many are eagerly awaiting their plates of turkey, mashed potatoes and green bean casserole. However, this month is also the time to recognize your blessings and give thanks for them.
According to Robert Emmons, practicing gratitude can “amplify positive emotions, such as joy and contentment.” In the month of Thanksgiving, when’s a better time to do so? We’ve come up with some ways in which you can give thanks this November. It’s a great way to stay a little cheerier when the weather starts to cool down.
1. Keep a gratitude journal.
At the end of each day, jot down what moments stood out to you. Explain why you’re thankful for them and how they affected you. Examples can include the sun shining when you woke up or a friendly driver letting you merge during rush hour.
2. Talk about good moments in your day.
This is a great way to learn about your loved ones’ days. Try going around the table at dinner and having each person say a few things they are thankful for that day. These quick tidbits will likely turn into fun stories you can look back on as memories.
3. Tell your loved ones you appreciate them.
If you think about it, your loved ones probably do more for you than you realize. Take a moment out of your day to send them an email or a letter about why you’re grateful for them. They likely won’t be expecting it, which will make it even more special. Who knows? Maybe they’ll soon return the kind gesture.
4. Look for silver linings.
Everyone has days where seemingly nothing goes the way they want it to. If you’re feeling down on your luck, check yourself, and remember all of the blessings in your life. Maybe it’s your family, or a job you love or your partner, or all of the above. You just need to remind yourself you won’t always feel down, and to look on the bright side.
5. Look around you.
People tend to feel more gratitude when they’re empathizing with others. It can be hard to be thankful when you’re focused on your own narrative. Try looking outward. There will always be someone less fortunate than you, so consider that when you feel like complaining. If you feel so compelled, you could also donate to those in need.
6. Thank yourself.
Have you been trying to live a healthier lifestyle or spend less money? Maybe you just did the laundry that had been piling up? Take a moment to thank yourself for taking care of you. Reward yourself for meeting a goal. Self-care is just as important as caring for others, so be kind to yourself as well.
Thanksgiving is a time to recognize everything you’ve been blessed with. Acknowledge that this November, and know a little “thank you” goes a long way.