The season of giving and gratitude is here. While the hype of enjoying delicious turkeys, watching the Thanksgiving Day Parade, and Black Friday shopping can be exciting, it can also overshadow the purpose of the holiday.
This is the time to give, share, and enjoy moments with your friends and family. It is the perfect opportunity to remember what we are grateful for and give thanks for the things, opportunities, life, and people in our lives that have been given to us.
Despite the abundance of ways you could take, let’s reflect on how to practice mindfulness this holiday season.
Take Time to Journal
Write down the things you are thankful for. One way you can practice gratitude is by keeping a journal specifically for writing down the things you are thankful for. You can go day by day and journal the things that made your day, made you think, and that you are thankful for.
From writing about the things you are grateful for that happened that day to the things you are thankful for having in your life, you can journal it.
If you are like me and struggle to remember to do certain tasks or often have too many things on your mind, it is a good idea to set a reminder. Set a daily reminder for a certain time of the day when you can take a few minutes to journal.
Ask Reflective Questions
At the end of each day, ask yourself questions that make you reflect on the events of that day.
What are five things that happened today that I am thankful occurred?
What are six things I am fortunate enough to be able to do?
What is something I did today that I am fortunate enough to be able to do?
The questions can vary depending on what you did that day. Your questions can also be about big or small things. The scale of significance does not matter when you make the questions.
Don’t Forget the Bad
When you practice mindfulness and gratitude, it is important not to forget the bad moments, too. In order to remember why we are grateful, you have to keep in mind the moments that weren’t as good as the others. When you take time to remember the not-so-great times, you can see how far you’ve come.
You can also write down the highs and lows of each day. This can help put into perspective whether the lows were significant or were perhaps not as bad as you once thought.
Use Your Senses
Practice using your senses as a way to ground yourself and gain an appreciation for even the simple things in life.
- Touch – Be thankful for the ability to brush your teeth, grab a cup of water, count your fingers, etc.
- Sight – Appreciate having the ability to see other people smile, beautiful sceneries, and more.
- Taste – Enjoy the tastes of delicious desserts, decadent snacks, and savory foods.
- Smell – Stop and smell the roses. You can find enjoyment and appreciation for your favorite smells: perfume, fresh grass, and laundry.
- Hearing – Be grateful for being able to listen to your favorite music, TV shows, movies, and the sound of people talking.
Using our senses helps us practice gratitude for the simple things humans can do that are sometimes overlooked or taken for granted.
Keep Visual Reminders Around
The final thing you can do to practice thankfulness and gratitude is to keep visual reminders. You can use vision boards, bulletin boards, and photos of friends and family. Keeping visual reminders of the things or people we are grateful for can help to keep us tied to what is most important in our lives.
Practicing mindfulness and gratitude can become an easy part of your daily routine if you add in practices or exercises like these.
So, remember to take time this holiday season and thank those you are grateful for and show appreciation for the big and little things you are able to do or have in your life.
Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!