Holland & Usry November 2018


As we approach Thanksgiving, I’m sure you’re thinking about what you’re grateful for this year. When we gather around the turkey and all the other good stuff that goes with it, we often give thanks for the big things like family and health. Without a doubt, these are worth being grateful for, and sharing that gratitude at Thanksgiving is a powerful tradition, but I want to talk about something a little different today. I believe that gratitude shouldn’t be limited to a holiday or time of year; it should be a habit we practice every day. Acting gratefully starts with the two words in the English language nobody says enough: thank you. Simply taking the time to show your appreciation for folks with those simple words can make a huge difference, both to you and the person on the receiving end. And thanks are in order for even the smallest of tasks. Somebody doesn’t need to pull you from a burning building to be worthy of your gratitude. Think about the young fella bagging your groceries at Publix. He probably feels invisible to the vast majority of the people he faithfully serves. The bagger already does a largely thankless job. He doesn’t need to be ignored on top of it. Simply looking him in the eyes and saying, “Thank you. I really appreciate your help,” can make him feel like a superstar. It’s an acknowledgment they hear far too rarely. Bagging groceries may not seem like a big deal, but it still requires somebody lending you a hand. He’s helping . That’s worthy of gratitude. You benefit from being grateful, as well. When we’re not actively thankful, others become invisible to us. In a small but very real way, the world becomes a little dimmer as we retreat ever so slightly into our shells. We quickly forget our blessings. We live in a world where it’s easy to fall prey to relentless negativity. Unless we take the time to recognize our blessings —

even the small ones — we can easily become another one of the doomsayers. Flipping your perspective and looking out for the ways people help you will keep you from growing pessimistic and withdrawn. It opens you to the goodness in the world. I promise that there are countless people helping you out on a daily basis. Take the time to notice.

I’m convinced sharing your sincere thankfulness with somebody has the power to change hearts and minds — including yours.

Gratitude is a value that knows no season. It’s a value we should all hold dear and practice as often as we can. When you demonstrate respect and care for those around you, you’ll be surprised to see how much it’s returned. And living a life of gratitude is even more gratifying than sharing a fantastic meal with the people you love most at the Thanksgiving table. –Rob Usry 864.582.0416

Acting gratefully starts with the two words in the English language nobody says enough: thank you.

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