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Celebrating a Life: Blog

    4 Creative Ways to Express Gratitude this Thanksgiving

    Posted by Cathy Nichols November 15, 2018

    Thanksgiving-Gratitude“Feeling gratitude and not expressing it is like wrapping a present and not giving it.”

    —William Arthur Ward

    What are you most thankful for in life? Perhaps, it’s food on the table. Or, a bed to sleep in at night.

    With Thanksgiving around the corner, there’s no better time to practice appreciation and thankfulness than the present. 

    So as the hustle and bustle of the holiday season kicks in, we encourage you to slow down and express gratitude for the things in your life. Below, we outline creative ways to do just that.

    1. Have a conversation with the people you love.  

    The simplest way to express gratitude more fully in your life is to verbalize your appreciation for others.

    As you sit down to enjoy Thanksgiving dinner, have each person go around and say something for which they’re grateful. If you’re feeling particularly grateful for another person in your life, tell them. This can open the door to meaningful and memorable conversation.

    But before diving in, make sure there are no distractions. Put your phone away if possible. This is a simple way to show admiration for the people you love.   

    >>>Related Resource: Read 4 Thanksgiving Conversation Starters for Around the Table.

    2. Write letters to close friends and family members.    

    Sometimes we forget to thank the people who make our lives better just by being in it. A creative way to express gratitude this Thanksgiving is to write out your appreciation. Share a specific example of something they did for you and how it made a difference in your life.

    To start, make a list of people you’d like to thank. This may include:

    • Family members
    • Friends
    • Neighbors
    • Caregivers
    • Coaches
    • Coworkers
    • Mentors
    • Patients
    • Volunteers

    Writing a handwritten letter is an easy way to make others aware of your gratitude. Plus, it can brighten someone’s day.

    3. Donate unused goods to a local shelter.

    A creative way to express gratitude for what you have is to share with others.

    Do you have old clothes or other belongings taking up space around the house? If the answer is yes, consider donating these items to a local homeless shelter or donation center. Before donating, be sure to ask the shelter what they need.

    In Northeast Ohio, the temperatures drop as the holiday season approaches. Donating hats, gloves, scarves and coats could make a difference in someone’s life.

    4. Volunteer in your community.

    This Thanksgiving, demonstrate gratitude by volunteering your time to a meaningful cause.

    Food pantries are always in need of volunteers around the holidays, as hungry individuals and families gather for a warm meal. Invite friends and family to serve a meal with you. If possible, collect money to donate canned foods and cleaning supplies.

    Or, stop by a local nursing home or hospital. During the holidays, many patients are alone, so offering to play cards or read books can brighten their spirits. 

    No matter where you choose to volunteer, take time to reflect on your experience. After all, there’s always something to be grateful for in life.

    Uncover Conversation Topics for the Holidays 

    Thanksgiving is almost here! What better time to get to know your loved ones better? Forget the small talk, and download Busch’s Essential Guide to Meaningful Conversation to tackle some of life’s most important questions together. Packed with 25+ conversation-starting questions and tips, this is sure to be a fun exercise for the whole family during the holiday season.

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    Image credit: Unsplash

    Topics: Live Well

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