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How grateful are you?

Will you struggle with being grateful this Thanksgiving? In a year of high unemployment, an uncertain economy, ongoing war and other problems, can you find things and people to be thankful for?

Consider these ideas to increase gratefulness
Think of a person important in your past. This is a person who made a difference in your life but you have not told how much you appreciated the help or guidance. Write a page about that and call, or better yet, visit that person and express your gratitude.

Keep a gratitude journal for a week. Each evening, write down three things you’re grateful for that day. Maybe it’s potable water, a bed to sleep in and shelter. Many in the world don’t have those basic necessities.

Take the gratitude survey to measure your appreciation about the past. It’s on the Authentic Happiness site from the University of Pennsylvania Positive Psychology Center. You’ll need to register and then you can use the resources, take the tests.

Gratitude is about being content
Gratitude can be cultivated. You can decrease your desire for consumer goods, be less envious of other’s positions or wealth if you look beyond your immediate surroundings.

Instead of being competitive and concerned about being self-reliant, think about how many have helped you and continue to help. Do you believe you have enough and should share? What can you give to others… physical things or emotional support?

Happy Thanksgiving. May you have a grateful heart. It improves your well-being.


A longer article from the Utah State University Extension, Cultivating Gratitude

I thank Ellen, Lee and Kristin who presented these ideas Sunday.

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