Thanksgiving every day

Who knew Sept. 21 was such a potent day of juicy possibility? 

While I knew it was the International Day of Peace, I didn’t realize it’s also World Gratitude Day 

As so much of the life I’d taken for granted has fallen away, I’ve found myself filled with appreciation and gratitude for many things I hadn’t considered. I never realized the privilege of full store shelves or being able to gather with friends. I took it for granted; but no more.

Often, we don’t know what we have until it’s gone.

How many times I’ve wished I could dial back time, to be able to savour and appreciate what I’ve taken for granted. From precious people, to life experiences, there have been many things I was blind to, until they were gone.

Taking life, and the people within our lives, for granted may be the quickest way to lose them. When we fail to appreciate life’s goodness, we also miss experiencing the benefits of gratitude.

I recently read a thought-provoking church sign: A person who feels appreciated will always do more than expected.

It caused me to reflect on the many people who bless my life with their support and help, from the small every-day acts, to the big. I have often let the small, but important things slip by unnoticed, and failed to acknowledge what they meant to me?

I know the feeling of being taken for granted, and I never want another person to feel the same way because of me. As I reflected on my life and the people in it, I’ve come to realize how bountifully I’m supported in many ways.

I’ve decided to up my quotient of gratitude and appreciation, and not wait for Thanksgiving to arrive; I’m living thanksgiving, and it feels amazing.

I realize how rich I am in so many ways. The list of people who serve to support the life I live is never ending. From my husband having coffee ready when I awaken, to the clerks at the grocery store, to police and city workers, the list goes on and on.

I realize how many people it takes to support my life; I am no longer blind, I am grateful.

As I turn my mind toward appreciation, I feel a lifting of my mind and emotions, and feel my body filled with vibrant energy. Try it, you might like it.

Research reveals people who cultivate gratitude experience:

  • a reduction in toxic emotions, such as envy, frustration, and regret
  • reduced depression and anxiety
  • stronger immune systems
  • fewer aches and pains
  • fewer symptoms of stress
  • better sleep
  • greater happiness
  • more enthusiasm and energy
  • greater determination and better focus in achieving goals
  • better resilience when challenged
  • greater optimism
  • stronger relationships
  • increased tendency to exercise

As science reveals the positive impact gratitude has on our health, wellness, and quality of life, I realize my expressions of gratitude likely benefit me more than others.

Thanksgiving isn’t just a day, it’s a way of life. As it approaches, it’s a great time to consider the importance of remembering to count our blessings, and harvest the bounty gratitude has for our health.

Start living thanksgiving, and see how that feels, it’s a juicy possibility.


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About the Author

Corinne is first a wife, mother, and grandmother, whose eclectic background has created a rich alchemy that serves to inform her perspectives on life.

Corinne, a registered nurse with a master’s degree in Health Science, is a staff minister with the Centre for Spiritual Living Kelowna, and a hospice volunteer. She is an adjunct professor with the school of nursing  at UBC Okanagan, and is currently teaching smartUBC, a unique Mindfulness program offered at UBC, to the public. She is an invited speaker and presenter.

From diverse experience and knowledge, personally and professionally, Corinne has developed an extraordinary passion for helping people to gain a new perspective, awaken, and to recognize that we do not have to be a slave to our thoughts or to life; we are always at a point of change.

Through this column, Corinne blends her insights and research to provide food for the mind and the heart, to encourage an awakening of the power and potential within everyone.

Corinne lives in Kelowna with her husband of 41 years, and can be reached at [email protected].

The views expressed are strictly those of the author and not necessarily those of Castanet. Castanet does not warrant the contents.

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