Does happiness feel like it’s eluding you? Do the holidays just seem to make that feeling worse? For some folks, the holiday season is a time of joy, family and celebration. For others, its the hardest time of year – a time when we really feel the pain of loss or loneliness, fear or doubt about our lives. It’s a time when happiness seems only a dream for innocent children.
As we roll into the holiday season (here in the USA it begins with Thanksgiving and the 1st ‘official’ shopping day for Christmas), there are plenty of folks ready to roll down the dark well of sadness. But it doesn’t have to be this way. Really. You see, I discovered a ‘tool’ that helped me sweep away the holiday blues once and for all – at the very hardest time of my life. And if it worked for me, I’m sure it will work for others …
It began in 2002, and it’s become a tradition for me ever since. But the first year was tough. It was the end of my marriage (although I didn’t exactly know that yet), and I was living in a home just seeped in tension and stress – yikes! But something really wonderful happened that year. Something that made me stand up and take notice: In the midst of one of the darkest times of my life, I decided it couldn’t possibly hurt just to write down some things that were good about my life.
It changed everything.
After I completed a surprisingly lengthy list of things I felt grateful for about my life, all the fear and anger and tension that I had come to live with on a daily basis subsided for awhile. In the end, it didn’t ‘save’ my marriage, but it did offer me some emotional respite. But it did much more than that. From this act of giving thanks, I gained a degree of insight and compassion about my life and my relationship that changed the way I dealt with both. This could never have happened while I was under heavy stress.
To this day, each Thanksgiving morning I take some quiet time to write down all sorts of things I’m thankful for. And in time, the once-a-year list became a daily event. Now, I open and close each day by stating out loud a few things I feel grateful for. And you know what? My happiness factor these days is consistently high :)
But Thanksgiving Day is still special, and I still make my list each year. This year, it included some personal stuff, but also a lot of global Gratitude like
- Feeling grateful for how many people are ‘waking up’ and tuning into their own personal power.
- Feeling great appreciation for the Occupiers who have the courage and fortitude to speak truth to power.
- Feeling so very thankful that there are now more than 1 Million organizations worldwide dedicated to human and environmental justice.
- Feeling deep gratitude for the ever-spreading understanding among people that our thoughts and feeling are the engine that drives manifestation – and the positive consequences of upliftment and thriving that this is bringing about!
- Feeling so very, VERY grateful for the power, truth and hope offered in the movie “Thrive” (do watch it if you haven’t yet!!)
So here’s my invitation to you: Give yourself some time this coming week to consider all you have to say “Thank you!” for. Especially if you feel the holiday blues creeping in. You can make a list, or call a few people you appreciate to say thank you; you could do a service, give a gift, or otherwise devote some moments to express your gratitude for all that you have and all that you are. AND … you can get started right here. Whether you’re feeling happy, sad or neutral right now, I’d really love to know just 3 little things (or big) that you’re thankful for right now! Share them with me in the comments below :)
Many blessings and happy, HAPPY Thanksgiving,