A Day of Gratitude

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not.”

Epicurus

I love the Thanksgiving holiday. It is noncommercial, a break in the  middle of the week, a chance to be together with family and friends, a day of feasting. Most important, it is a day of gratitude.

As most Americans remember from their history books, the holiday was started by the pilgrims, the earliest settlers on this continent. I can only imagine that they were grateful to be in a land in which they were free from tyranny and could take destiny into their own hands and decide, for themselves, their fate. However, circumstances were far from easy. They were exceedingly poor, lived in simple huts, succumbed to the elements and disease as evidenced by the fact that the earliest pilgrims buried seven people for each hut they built.

And yet they set aside a day to give thanks. In spite of their harsh living conditions and physical challenges, they deliberately choose to express their thanks for the goodness of their lives.

I have to admit that there have been times when I’ve been caught up in the day and, except for a blessing on the food, have not taken time to give thanks. But I want to suggest that giving thanks should be foremost on our minds this day. This is a day to pause and reflect on the many blessings of our lives. Just as important as reflecting on these blessings is expressing them out loud. Something about expressing gratitude nourishes the soul and strengthens the bonds of love with those dearest to us.

Research shows that people who regularly express thanks have a more positive mood in daily life, experience greater happiness and social well-being, and are even healthier physically. Such a simple thing. A mindset more than anything. So let’s give thanks, not only on this Thanksgiving Day, but every day.


About Roger K. Allen
Roger K. Allen, Ph.D. is an expert in personal transformation and family development. His tools and methods have helped tens of thousands of people live happier and more effective lives. To learn more, visit www.rogerkallen.com>.

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