Make Thanksgiving a Way of Life — Not Just a Holiday
Gratitude Essential to Happiness
When I was a young child and someone gave me a gift, or helped me in some way, I recall my mother prompting, “Now, what do you say?”
That prompt has, no doubt, been uttered by millions of mothers trying to teach their children good manners. The answer, of course, is “thank you!” A simple two-word expression with a lot of depth, wisdom, strength and empathy behind it.
Being thankful is always in good taste. Gratitude is an essential element of an abundant life. It is a character trait that contributes to the success of families, businesses and society, and to our own happiness. Without gratitude, human interaction would be sterile and joyless. Relationships would be less warm and meaningful.
We need to both feel gratitude and express it. Feeling gratitude puts life’s challenges into proper perspective. Expressing gratitude gives happiness to others and, in the process, boosts our own spirits.
The blessings of gratitude are doubled when we thank someone for their influence in our lives. By making someone else’s day, we make our own day.
Philosophers, poets, preachers, wise men and women, cowboys, and media personalities have touted the immense value of gratitude. Here are some of my favorite quotes:
Albert Schweitzer: “At times, our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us.”
Dietrich Bonhoeffer: “... it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.”
Marcus Tullius Cicero: “Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues but the parent of all others.”
Willie Nelson: “When I started counting my blessings, my whole life turned around.”
William James: “The deepest craving of human nature is the need to be appreciated.”
Mary Davis: “The more grateful I am, the more beauty I see.”
Aesop: “Gratitude is the sign of noble souls.”
Doris Day: “Gratitude is riches. Complaint is poverty.”
Fred De Witt Van Amburgh: “None is more impoverished than the one who has no gratitude. Gratitude is the currency that we can mine for ourselves, and spend without fear of bankruptcy.”
Gilbert K. Chesterton: “I would maintain that thanks are the highest form of thought, and that gratitude is happiness doubled by wonder.”
Rabbi Harold Kushner: “If you concentrate on finding whatever is good in every situation, you will discover that your life will suddenly be filled with gratitude, a feeling that nurtures the soul.”
Oprah Winfrey: “Be thankful for what you have; you’ll end up having more. If you concentrate on what you don’t have, you will never, never have enough.”
Zig Ziglar: “Gratitude is the healthiest of all human emotions. The more you express gratitude for what you have, the more likely you will have even more to express gratitude for.”
Albert Einstein: “There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.”
Alphonse Karr: “Some people grumble that roses have thorns; I am grateful that thorns have roses.”
I, for one, am grateful for a national holiday dedicated to feeling grateful. Happy Thanksgiving this month! And thank you for banking with us. We appreciate your business.