I’ve been working on a project this month to celebrate thanksgiving. I set up a gratitude tree in my yard and asked my friends and neighbors to participate by writing a note of gratitude on a tag, and hanging it from an oak tree. When I started this project a few years back it was more selfish in nature. I wanted to be grateful, and by proclaiming my thankfulness in the front yard for the neighborhood to see, I was holding myself accountable. The idea spread, which has me wondering: What makes people so hungry for gratitude?
This season I have found myself to be frustrated, to say the least, at the retailers and advertisers attempt to bypass Thanksgiving in favor of consumers spending more money on Christmas. It is easy to walk away feeling like you are not enough or that you don’t have enough. It feels like Christmas has started in November and Thanksgiving is becoming endangered. All of which feels greedy and lifeless. Who wouldn’t be in search of deeper meaning?
The holiday season, by which I mean Thanksgiving and Christmas, is intended to be about giving love: Love for yourself, your loved ones, strangers, your God. When we strip away all the material things, the only thing left should be love. So this year I am proclaiming that we should not just be thankful. We need to become gratitude warriors and fight for what really matters.
This year more than ever, I have felt the loss of meaning. A missing piece to a greater whole. By celebrating what I am thankful for and giving others the chance to do the same the gap is closing. I am spreading love.
Overall, what I have learned through this crazy experiment is that by practicing gratitude myself, I have in turn, helped others become gratitude warriors. I couldn’t be more humbled at the opportunity to provide a space for others to see our world exactly as it is and simply love it.
Will you be a gratitude warrior with me?
For more updates on the gratitude tree and for gratitude challenges see the website.