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Thanksgiving: A Lifestyle, Not Just a Holiday

November 15, 2021 4 min read

Thanksgiving is traditionally a season of reflection to honor all that we are thankful for. It is an invocation for us to come together in the name of love for family, community, and our divine spirit. Our gratitude can inspire us to be generous with our hearts, our forgiveness, and our respect for each other.

The miracle is this - the more we share, the more we have.
--Leonard Nimoy

But… the holidays can be tricky. I know many of my friends that are gathering with their families have made a pact to not discuss politics. Our country today has the divisive atmosphere of “us versus them.” Can we set all of our differences aside to come together with joy?  

On the other hand, there is this; many of us have felt a sense of loss, experienced ill health, the end of relationships and loneliness. When we have lost loved ones, the holidays can change from celebration to grief. These emotions seem bigger than life when we see the images of “Norman Rockwell families" in the media and feel the disappointment of that not being our story.

Can we honor our perfectly imperfect life knowing that there is our own version of abundance? Even though a lot of stuff happens to us, can we consciously surrender our expectations, or our need for life to be a certain way, in order to let go? Otherwise, we will be forever chained to the past, feeling stressed while wishing things were different.

Thanksgiving is traditionally a season of reflection to honor all that we are thankful for. It is an invocation for us to come together in the name of love for family, community, and our divine spirit. Our gratitude can inspire us to be generous with our hearts, our forgiveness, and our respect for each other.

The miracle is this - the more we share, the more we have.
--Leonard Nimoy

But… the holidays can be tricky. I know many of my friends that are gathering with their families have made a pact to not discuss politics. Our country today has the divisive atmosphere of “us versus them.” Can we set all of our differences aside to come together with joy?  

On the other hand, there is this; many of us have felt a sense of loss, experienced ill health, the end of relationships and loneliness. When we have lost loved ones, the holidays can change from celebration to grief. These emotions seem bigger than life when we see the images of “Norman Rockwell families" in the media and feel the disappointment of that not being our story.

Can we honor our perfectly imperfect life knowing that there is our own version of abundance? Even though a lot of stuff happens to us, can we consciously surrender our expectations, or our need for life to be a certain way, in order to let go? Otherwise, we will be forever chained to the past, feeling stressed while wishing things were different.

Thanksgiving: A lifestyle | Mukha Yoga

As hard as it may seem, what if we were grateful for our struggles? Without them, would we have ever stumbled across our strengths?

We may not understand how it works, but research shows that practicing gratitude through thick and thin increases not just our sense of well-being, but our happiness, optimism, connection, and empathy. It may even reduce aggression. All these benefits are exactly what we need as we navigate the hard seasons of life and struggle with pain, grief, disappointment, and worry.

We can ask ourselves this question: what do I need to take my attention off of and what do I need to put my attention on?

If our life (and the world) isn’t anywhere near what we thought it would be, our inner wisdom in the present moment will guide us in knowing what we have control over and what we don't. Consider that maybe we could create a version of the holiday that fits our circumstances and inspires peace and joy in a way that is unexpected. It could become our own meaningful tradition.

We can cultivate a generous spirit by reminding ourselves that we have enough. As expressed in this quote; “When you love what you have, you have everything you need.” (Author unknown)

If we truly want to be in charge of our own happiness, wherever we are on this sometimes painful but beautiful journey of life, we can make every day a day to give thanks.

Thanksgiving | Mukha Yoga

We can ask ourselves this question: what do I need to take my attention off of and what do I need to put my attention on?

If our life (and the world) isn’t anywhere near what we thought it would be, our inner wisdom in the present moment will guide us in knowing what we have control over and what we don't. Consider that maybe we could create a version of the holiday that fits our circumstances and inspires peace and joy in a way that is unexpected. It could become our own meaningful tradition.

We can cultivate a generous spirit by reminding ourselves that we have enough. As expressed in this quote; “When you love what you have, you have everything you need.” (Author unknown)

If we truly want to be in charge of our own happiness, wherever we are on this sometimes painful but beautiful journey of life, we can make every day a day to give thanks.

Julie Bertinga l Mukha Yoga Writer
By Julie Bertagna; All Rights Reserved @2021

Julie Bertinga l Mukha Yoga Writer By Julie Bertagna; All Rights Reserved @2021