Giving thanks on Thanksgiving

It's that time of year again - the fourth Thursday of November! This means very little to you, unless you're American. Then you know it's Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving is an American holiday where we practice an attitude for gratitude, celebrate all our blessings and overeat while we spend time with loved ones.


I do have to say that only Americans would make Black Friday the day directly after Thanksgiving. Right after being thankful for what you have - you'll queue for hours on hours to wait for material goods you don't need. I digress...


Daily thanksgiving?

Why wait once a year to celebrate Thanksgiving? A daily thanksgiving is better for you. Period.


Last year, we described the mental, emotional and physical benefits of showing gratitude and celebrating what you have Here's the post and here's one excerpt:

It turns out that having an attitude of gratitude and consciously recognising the things we are thankful for has tons of positive health effects. The studies are numerous and conclusive: expressing gratitude improves numerous aspects of your life. It can lead to better connections and intimacy, better sleep, increases life satisfaction, shifts our focus, and reduces our fears, stress, and worry. American psychologist Martin Seligman is credited as being the founder of positive psychology. His research proved we can retrain our brain so we feel happier on a day-to-day basis. In one study he showcases how powerful a simple technique can be on this retraining: write down three things that went well each day, every day, along with an explanation for why each good thing happened.

The Training Practice gives thanks

At work we often celebrate successes, shout out strengths and discuss what's going well. It's a great way to slow down and deliberatively practice our attitude for gratitude.


One theme we consistently discuss is how thankful we are for each other. We really do have a wonderful team. We get shit done and deliver. But we don't take ourselves too seriously, we have a laugh, we connect. We connect on our shared experiences and value our diversity (particularly when it comes to Stuff quiz questions)! And we bring a positive energy, day in and day out. We are passionate about what we do and why we do it.


On top of that, here are some of the things we're extra thankful for this year:

Kristen:

  • Exploring more of New Zealand. In January I spent a week in Northland with James and my in-laws. It was magical. (oh, and we got engaged at Cape Reinga at sunrise). In April James and I went to Coromandel and Opotiki. New Zealand really is paradise!

  • Turning 30 and celebrating the day with friends

  • My younger brother got married two weeks ago. While we couldn't be there (ugh, Covid!), I was able to Zoom in for the ceremony from the comfort of my pyjamas. It was beautiful - and comfy.

  • All the little ones in my life (both here and in the States). Auntie Kristen really is my favourite form!

Dinah:

This year I'm grateful for veterinary medicine, greyhounds, and disposable income. Those three things combined to keep my miniature poodle Coco alive after she ingested rat bait sometime in August.


The veterinary team diagnosed the problem, the greyhound provided the life-saving blood transfusion, and the disposable income just about covered it... So maybe I should also be grateful that the pandemic response meant money that might have been used for travel was available for the bills.


Hilary:

  • My husband and two daughters

  • My grandson, Julian, and being able to talk to him online.

  • Being able to ask for help with tech stuff and getting it

  • Being able to connect with people and often making them laugh

  • Being able to learn

James:

  • Brazilian Jiu Jitsu - picked up this sport about a year ago and am loving it!

  • The opportunity to go to Outward Bound

  • Travelling NZ (see Kristen's comment!)

  • Food - I love food. And I'm lucky that I get to eat some amazing homemade food. Shout out to my mum who cooks us at least one delicious meal a week!

Kiera:

  • Starting my role here at The Training Practice! I have learnt so much, and absolutely love working with Hilary, Dinah, Kristen and James.

  • My kitten we got at the beginning of the year, he has has brought so much joy to my daily life. If anyone is considering to get a pet I highly reccomend.

  • Study at university - education is such a privilege, and I only have three months left!

  • My health


Your turn

Fight whatever Kiwi cringe is rising - and just do it. It only has benefits - there really are zero downsides.


Privately give thanks - for the large and little things - daily, weekly, monthly. Count your blessings.


But also, tell the people you're thankful in your life that you appreciate them. Don't assume they'll know. Be explicit - tell them. It's impactful. Whether at home or at work - it's important to know we're valued.


I'll leave you with the words of Kanye West (Big Brother, at 4:05):

'If you admire somebody, you should go ahead and tell them. People never get the flowers while they can still smell them.'