Tomorrow is Thanksgiving here in the U.S., and as we navigate decisions on whether we’ll see our loved ones or not, there seems to be a universally accepted consensus – this year, we need gratitude more than ever – for everything, even for life itself.

It isn’t always easy. Especially in a year like this. Fear is terribly insidious.

Fear finds its way into the most mundane of thoughts. We always seem to be worried – whether it’s about paying the bills, if we’ll get the job or have the raise, worry for our kids, or worry for any number of things that could happen (or not) in the future. It’s just too easy to be pulled into the negativity. Unfortunately, all that worry is unproductive.

It’s easy to take the little things for granted. (Believe me, I know!)

Most of us have more blessings than we can count. Could you have imagined, at the beginning of this year, of simply being thankful for a healthy body (not a perfect one)? Or a warm home, that may be disheveled, but where you’re spending most of your time today? (There are those who do.)

If instead, we redirect our attention onto all the good things going on in our lives, we’ll feel better, more positive, and likely, we’ll have more of those good things coming.

This is especially true in our relationships. How easy is it to focus on what’s going wrong, versus what’s going right? Our relationships grow through love, not critiques.

As a practice, try bringing your attention to your heart while inhaling five seconds in, and exhaling five seconds out. See your breath leave through your heart. Feel appreciation for someone – whether it’s a partner, a family member, a friend, or a pet. Afterwards, tell that loved one how much you appreciate them for a specific thing. The more specific, the more meaningful it feels. It’s a very simple way to create love.

As another practice, put appreciation on those things that you want in your life. Suppose that you already had everything that you needed or ever wanted, now. What old habits or old feelings would you let go of? Where would your focus be instead?

When we feel gratitude, we send the belief that the event has already occurred. If there’s anything that has taught us this year, it’s to expect the unexpected. Choose the reality you want, live it in your thoughts and feelings, and give thanks for them, now.

As I prepare for the day ahead, I send love and appreciation for you all, my friends. I send you the biggest virtual hug. May gratitude fill your heart today and always. ♥️