A Life of Thanksgiving

Spread happiness to both yourself and those around you by finding ways to incorporate gratitude in your life.

By: Sylvia Slezak

Have you said thank-you to people to show how grateful you are for them today? It’s such a small thing, but it can have a huge impact on your life, and the life of those people.

Find little ways to incorporate gratitude in your life, and you’ll be much happier … and you’ll make the people around you much happier, as well. That’ll have a ripple effect that will make the world a better place … with such a small gesture!

Saying thank-you isn’t hard at all. But the words can lose meaning if they’re just words. You need to say them with sincerity, or show your gratitude through little actions.

Cicero said that, “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others.” To get us in the mood for the Thanksgiving holiday, here are some tips for living a life of gratitude – not just this holiday season, but throughout the year.

“Gratitude is the heart’s memory,” according to the French proverb. Therefore, one of the first steps to thankfulness is to “remember.”

Make time to remember:
• Those in our lives who have walked with us and shown kindness
• The hard times you once experienced, how difficult life used to be and how far you have come

Use visual reminders:
• People, places and photographs can trigger thoughts of gratitude Keep a gratitude journal:
• Remind yourself daily of the gifts, grace, benefits and good things you enjoy
• Recall moments of gratitude associated with ordinary events, your personal attributes or valued people in your life

Say thank-you:
• Write a little note, email or a small gift for a specific thing the person has done for you
• Give a “free” hug (when appropriate) or favor. “Free” means you don’t expect anything in return — just give it as a gift of gratitude

Learn prayers of gratitude:
• Through prayers, people recognize the ultimate source of all they are and all they will ever be

Come to your senses:
• Through the ability to touch, see, smell, taste and hear, we gain an appreciation of what it means to be human and of what an incredible miracle it is to be alive

Watch your language:
• Focus on inherently good things that others have done on your behalf, in place of how inherently good you are
• Use words like “gifts,” “givers,” “blessings,” “blessed,” “fortune,” “fortunate” and “abundance”

Give back – pay it forward:
• The beauty of giving doesn’t mean reciprocating favors so that everything is fair and the tally is even
• If someone does an act of kindness for you, one way to say thanks is to do the same for another

This article was contributed by Sylvia Slezak, director of marketing and social media at CityOf.com. Explore Corpus Christi and what it has to offer by visiting us online at www.cityof.com/corpuschristi and look for us on Facebook at www.facebook.com/cityofcom.


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