Giving Thanks with Happiness – Happy Thanksgiving!
By: May McCarthy
As we consider the upcoming celebration of Thanksgiving, we often think of families and friends gathering together over delicious meals. We eat, drink, and are merry as we wish each other Happy Thanksgiving. This can also be a time to demonstrate valuable success principles in order to live happier, healthier, and more fulfilling lives. The following can help you to remember the benefits of giving thanks with happiness during the holidays and throughout your life:
Giving is the first step to receiving what you want sooner. As we give to others the symbols of what we want to receive, we welcome the same type of good into our lives. I’ve demonstrated the success principle; as I give what I want to receive, it returns to me in even greater quantities. You can too!
To activate this success principle, start giving first. Perhaps you could look for organizations in your neighborhood where you can easily share something with less fortunate or lonely neighbors. As part of the Thanksgiving Holiday, you can value and appreciate others by giving your money and/or your time so that others can enjoy a hot meal in a warm and safe place. One of our local organizations is Seattle’s Union Gospel Mission (www.ugm.org) who has determined that it costs just $1.98 to serve a Thanksgiving meal to a person in need. As you give a wonderful Thanksgiving to others, it will not only make you feel good, but it activates the success principle so that you will feel valued and appreciated as you enjoy your own Thanksgiving more fully.
The act of gratitude in Thanksgiving is also a success principle. Deborah Norville, a successful television anchor and journalist said, “What I’ve learned is there’s a scientifically proven phenomenon that’s attached to gratitude, and that if you consciously take note of what is good in your life, quantifiable benefits happen.” Gratitude also improves emotional and physical health and can strengthen relationships and communities, according to author and researcher Dr. Robert Emmons. In his bestselling book Thanks!, Dr. Emmons backs up his claim with eight years of intensive research. He found that people who view life as a gift and consciously acquire an “attitude of gratitude” will experience multiple advantages. “Gratitude enriches human life,” he writes. “It elevates, energizes, inspires and transforms. People are moved, opened and humbled through expressions of gratitude.” Some strategies Dr. Emmons recommends for expressing gratitude include keeping a gratitude journal, learning prayers of gratitude, and using visual reminders. In the gratitude letter process that I describe in my book, The Path to Wealth, you’ll benefit from the same results described by Dr. Emmons. You’ll proclaim your gratitude in words that evoke strong uplifting emotions. You will list goals and intentions that you haven’t achieved yet, showing gratitude for them as if they have already manifested in your life.
For example, within the first week of writing a daily gratitude letter that included my company goal to receive $400,000 in new revenue, a customer came to mind. I felt an impulse to call her, which I did. I called her office and learned that she had left her position three months prior for a new job at a larger health system. I called her cell phone and congratulated her on her new position. She thanked me and said that she had planned to call me later that week. She wanted to implement our software and equipment technology across all her hospitals in the new health system. She had already received budget approval of the overall plan, and the hospital’s first order would be over $400,000. She was ready to get started with a contract right away. As we give success to others and express gratitude for what we want as though we’ve already achieved it, our intuition will point out possibilities for us to manifest our goals. You can do this too!
Finally, to comment on the “happy” part of the Happy Thanksgiving celebration, I believe that inspirational author Denis Waitley said it perfectly; “Happiness cannot be traveled to, owned, earned, worn or consumed. Happiness is the spiritual experience of living every minute with love, grace, and gratitude.” Be thankful for all that you have and all that you desire. As you do so, it will multiply in your life. Happiness has other advantages as well. Barbara Fredrickson is a researcher of positive psychology at the University of North Carolina. In her 2008 paper “Open Hearts Build Lives: Positive Emotions, Induced through Loving-Kindness Meditation, Build Consequential Personal Resources”, she claims, “When you are experiencing positive emotions like joy, contentment, and love, you will see more possibilities in your life . . . Positive emotions broaden your sense of possibility and open your mind up to more options.” Happy people perceive a wider range of data, solve more problems, and come up with more ideas for action. As you choose to be happy, your success will increase.
This is a great time of year to practice these success principles. I hope that you and your loved ones enjoy a wonderful and Happy Thanksgiving Holiday. You can learn more success principles in my book, The Path to Wealth; Seven Spiritual Steps for Financial Abundance. www.bizzultz.com/book