Browse Tag: Thanksgiving

Happy Thanksgiving!

I had the opportunity to go to Ohio a few weeks ago during the height of fall color. There were moments it simply took my breath away.

Ohio Fall Color 2015

On my return to Los Angeles I was welcomed home to 90° heat with Santa Ana winds – our special SoCal version of fall.

I’ve always loved living in Southern California. We have the beaches, the mountains, and Disneyland all within a short drive. I often forget the beauty of nature that surrounds me. And while I do get to travel a fair amount for my business and for leisure, it’s a rare occurrence to actually get me “outdoors” beyond my garden. I do love my climate-controlled indoor environments.

As I sit here writing this and reflecting on the time I had last month experiencing nature in all its glory and change, it occurred to me it was one more thing I have experienced that I have to be thankful for – the ability to access and explore the vast open spaces the United States offers. We have access to these open spaces through parks and preserves; from local municipal to great national treasures.

I would like to suggest this Thanksgiving, rather than queuing up for your 5 a.m. retail fix (or, God forbid, actually going out shopping on Thanksgiving day), that you and your family spend some time outdoors. Connect with nature. I know I’ll be doing just that.

Giving Thanks for More Than One Day Out Of the Year

Today, most of our attention (if not focused on pie and turkey) is brought to the holidays, family, friends and what we have to be grateful for.

In many homes it’s a family tradition to go around the table on Thanksgiving and have each guest state one thing they’re grateful for. I think this is a great tradition.

Gratitude Journal 2013.1 Darker

But I have a better one. I maintain a gratitude journal and a gratitude practice where each and every day I spend time really focusing on what I have to be grateful for in my life.

I teach gratitude journaling to every student, every client, and just about anyone who will sit with me long enough to listen. I’ve been teaching it for a couple of decades at this point. It’s important to remember that while we have breath in our body, we have something to be grateful for. I don’t care what the circumstances are that you’re facing currently, you have something to be grateful for. And when you begin to approach life from that perspective you begin to understand how you can change your circumstances.

Whether coming at it from Law of Attraction or creative consciousness, everything you want and desire has to begin with gratitude for what you have currently. So here are the steps I take in my own gratitude practice:

Every night I write down 3 to 5 things I encountered that day that I’m grateful for. It’s important to understand that writing things down triggers all three mechanisms for adult learning (visual – you see the words; auditory – you speak the words in your mind; and kinesthetic – the act of writing the words out) and in doing so you create the strongest anchors to these experiences of gratitude.

It’s important to do this at night before you go to sleep. The reason for that is if you’re falling asleep worrying about getting kids to soccer, paying your mortgage, not being late to work the next day, then what do you think your rest is like? But if you’re focusing on what you had to be grateful for, you’re changing the whole energy of where your attention is; it’s a biochemical change your brain. Ultimately you are going to marinate in your own thoughts for 6 to 8 hours, so let’s make them good ones.

And just an aside, my clients who do this consistently typically hit their goals 50% sooner than the ones who choose to bypass this process.

So start today, tell me what you have to be grateful for.

And have a Happy Thanksgiving.