Thanksgiving, like New Years, acts as the perfect opportunity for some much needed introspection. I know that I am not the best at remembering to always have gratitude and to avoid taking things for granted, and I don’t think I’m alone in that shortcoming. It’s so much easier to bitch and moan than to consistently look for the silver lining. Complaining has an intoxicating quality it. There’s something validating in lamentation. However, it’s not the best trait, and it really doesn’t solve anything.
I think a lot of our generation has a hard time taking a moment and remembering just how much there is to be grateful for. I also think the mainstream media spouting hate and thinly veiled divisive rhetoric conditions us to approach our lives that way. Society ingrains a lot of our tendencies to gripe and bellyache. I also believe there is no time like the present to try and subvert those inclinations and focus on being grounded in gratitude. There is a lot to be thankful for, and by keeping those thoughts at the forefront of our minds, I believe our chances at contentment and happiness and at inner-peace increase dramatically.
So, I want to take some time to really be thankful for my friends and family. For my glorious puppy. For having a job with some really great people. For opportunities to travel. For wine and good food. For some really fabulous clothes and shoes. For my health (even though my tonsils have to come out soon).
On a slightly different note, I’d be remiss not to make a plug for Standing Rock on Thanksgiving of all days. The Standing Rock Sioux tribe and their supporters have been protesting the Dakota Access Pipeline due to concerns over water contamination and the destruction of sacred lands since July. It is now winter in North Dakota and temperatures are dropping dramatically; these protesters are facing hypothermia (not helped by the water cannons and spraying various agents on the protesters). While you’re out doing your Black Friday shopping, consider donating to Standing Rock. Our country has a disgusting history when it comes to indigenous people, and I for one Stand with Standing Rock.
Read more on how to help here.