If you spend any time at all on Facebook, you’ve likely seen a new trend this November. I’m not talking about political status updates---thank goodness. Someone, somewhere in the World Wide Web decided that each day in November, they would post a status about something they were thankful for. The crusade was adopted and has become a certifiable trend. And I couldn’t be happier. One of my best habits is saying thank you. I say it a lot. I thank cashiers, waiters, and people who hold open doors just like my mother taught me. But I also offer up non-verbal thanks. I’ve never cared too much about figuring out who I’m silently thanking, maybe it’s a higher being, maybe it’s the universe, maybe it’s the neurons firing in my brain. Truth is, that part just doesn’t matter so much to me. What matters is acknowledging my gratitude.
Every night and every morning I silently reel off a list of things and people I’m grateful for: My husband, my family & friends, my life, my health, the health of all the people I already mentioned etc. I think it helps put me in the proper frame of mind and reminds me how incredibly blessed I am to lead the life I do.
Throughout the day I’ll send out silent shout outs for the things that make me happy---a letter from a friend, a particularly great cup of coffee, a snuggly blanket. Acknowledging the joy or peace of a moment goes hand in hand with being grateful. When I tell my husband how content I am to be sitting next to him and reading a good book, I’m also saying thanks; thanks for a perfect moment.
I haven’t hopped on the Facebook thanks train, at least not yet, but I’ve enjoyed reading notes of gratitude from friends and acquaintances who are thankful for their family, friends, freedom, jobs, spouses, and pets among other things. Right now, I’m thankful that I have the opportunity to write this column every week, I’m grateful to Elisabeth and Miya for welcoming my enthusiastic email and inviting me in; I am continually awed by my inclusion as a contributor alongside women whose words paint pictures, tell stories, and inspire searching thought and I am always pleased as punch that anyone besides my parents would care to read my words.