Happy Monday, everyone!
Thanksgiving week is upon us here in the US. Despite the deluge of pre-Black Friday ads making their way into every conceivable form of media, I believe that a growing number of people in the states are looking for a return to simpler times and values. More and more people are taking a stand on blogs and social media saying that a national day of Thanksgiving is precisely just that, a day to come together as a nation and appreciate all that we have. It is a day to honor what no amount of money can buy.
When it comes to restoring meaning to Thanksgiving, or any holiday for that matter, we have the power to create the holiday we want for ourselves. I believe that the majority of Americans do want Thanksgiving to have value and meaning. Somehow our voice just needs to be heard above all of the advertising. We need to train ourselves act, not react when bombarded with so much pressure to consume and spend money. It is in our power to ” just say no” and create real meaning in our lives. I think as a society we often forget that we are not helpless in the way the world unfolds but each day we create the society we live in by our words and our actions.
In keeping with Minimalist philosophy about putting people and experiences before things I thought I would share some ideas on how to show thanks and gratitude this holiday season.
Take the time to say “thanks” to those close to you. Just saying these simple words to those you care about can mean so much.
Take a minute and send a greeting to those who are far away but close in heart. Snail mail is a lost art. If you have the time, a handwritten card is a nice touch. If you are pressed for time or concerned about the environment, e-cards can be a nice way to let someone know that you are thinking about them.
Do something nice for someone and pay it forward. A few years ago ” pay it forward” was all the rage. Many people I know have been the recipient of a free cup of coffee or some other small gesture of kindness since the trend started. Remember how good it felt and how it restored your faith in humanity to see this take place in our culture? Do your part to keep “paying if forward” moving forward.
Simply take the time to be grateful. Often, we just need to take a minute to reflect on all that we have. I had to be reminded this myself this week as I was acting very dramatic at the news I needed a new furnace immediately. After whining to everyone about my misfortune and the strain to my finances, it dawned on me that I needed to cut the drama. I have blessings galore and a new energy-efficient furnace and air conditioner to boot.
Smile at people. Have you ever had a complete stranger smile at you? Not the creepy stalker or I want to hit on you smile. Rather, a genuine smile given in kindness and nothing more. It is a great feeling to be a recipient of such a smile. You will make many people’s day a little bit brighter just by smiling at them.
Be ready to be of service to others. Maybe you feel the call to work at the food bank or a shelter this holiday season. Often, we do not know when we will be called on to be of service to others. The senior who needs help getting groceries to the car, the mom who drops her keys while trying to rock her crying child in the store, the stranded motorist, or the neighbor who can not get out to shovel the sidewalk. Keep your eyes and ears open to lend a hand.
Make a list. Make a list of things you appreciate about someone you care about. Write it on a nice piece of stationery and give it to them to keep as a reminder that they are loved and that they are special.
If you live in the US, I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving full of blessings large and small. As always, I would love to hear from you!
Thanks for stopping by the blog 🙂
Until next time,