Thanksgiving is going to be different this year.
At times, 2020 has seemed to be a never-ending stream of bad news. Most of us have had to cancel our traditional family get-togethers because of COVID-19. Because of the pandemic, too many families will never be whole again.
As difficult as this year has been, Thanksgiving is a reminder to take time to reflect upon the things you are grateful for. Your family. Your friends. Your health. Even if things are dark right now, try to think about what makes you feel thankful, no matter how inconsequential it may seem.
It’s not just an empty platitude. Scientists have found that being grateful actually rewires your brain. It can ease depression and lessen anxiety. Feeling gratitude has been shown to have many positive effects, not just on your mental health, but your physical health, too. When you feel grateful, you are more likely to exercise and sleep better.
Keeping a gratitude journal is a wonderful way to remind yourself of the good things in your life. It can be the smallest thing: a sunny day, your child acing a test, hearing your favorite song on the radio—or enjoying a good meal, like at Thanksgiving.
Being grateful is not about ignoring the negative things in your life. It’s about accepting them and focusing on the positive. And we can all use a bit of that this Thanksgiving.
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