It’s that time of year! The holidays are just around the corner and many of us are likely busy in preparation for food, gifts, travel, and more. Here in the United States, we’ll be celebrating Thanksgiving shortly. Yet, quite often Thanksgiving ends up being more about the food and less about what really matters. Whether or not you will also be celebrating, being thankful for these 7 little things are important not just during the holidays, but all year round.
Family and Friends
This one is a no brainer. These are the people who are there for us when the going gets tough, and the ones who were there for you before anyone cared about how many friends you have on Facebook. Be grateful for all the time you have to spend together!
With the day before Thanksgiving being one of the busiest travel days of the year, it can be crowded and frustrating to get from place to place. But guess what? You can live half way across the country or on the other side of the world, and you have the opportunity to go home to visit family for the holidays, or any other time of year! Even if you have to deal with delays or big crowds, remember how blessed you are for that option to even be available to you.
That incredible turkey dinner is a luxury that can be easy to take for granted. Served with sides like mashed potatoes, gravy, green beans, rolls, stuffing, and more, it can be hard to not dig in right away without taking a breather. Savor each and every bite, and be thankful for the delicious cuisine you are able to enjoy each year.
The world is becoming increasingly connected as technology continues to advance at a faster and faster pace. Even if you can’t make it back home for the holidays, you can easily jump on Skype or FaceTime and see your family and friends face to face. The days are gone when you would have to make a long distance phone call to get in touch or wait for a letter to arrive in the mail!
With that said, when you are spending time with family and friends during the holidays, cherish that time and put your devices away. Focus on being in the moment with your loved ones and not what everyone else is doing on social media.
Even if “home” to you is many places around the world, be thankful for the roof that is over your head. When I spent Christmas in Zambia, one day was “America Day” where we taught the kids about Thanksgiving and other common traditions in the United States. When asked to share what they were thankful for, most of them said things like my home, my bed, teachers, and family. Rather than a new toy or material object, they were simply grateful for having the security of somewhere to live and someone to take care of them.
Set aside your work and worries, and appreciate the present moment. Slow down the pace instead of being the busy bees so many Americans are every other day of the year. Sending an extra special shoutout to companies like REI for not being open on Black Friday, and allowing their employees to have the paid time off they deserve to enjoy however they would like.
Pay a little closer attention than usual this year and remember to appreciate those little things. After all, it’s the little things that make life big.
What are you thankful for this Thanksgiving? Let me know in the comments below!