Thanksgiving celebrations in the “New World” began as harvest celebrations as early as the 1500’s. The first official Thanksgiving celebration occurred in 1621, as the Pilgrims and Native Americans came together to celebrate their first harvest after settling in Massachusetts. From that time, the observance of Thanksgiving took place, off and on, and was designated by the United States Congress in 1941 to be observed on the fourth Thursday in November.
We are thinking that those who initiated the festival of Thanksgiving really knew what they were doing in taking a specific time out to express gratitude for their bounteous blessings. Research has shown that those who are able to and regularly express gratitude tend to experience a plethora of health benefits. Robert Emmons, UCA-Davis, has found that grateful people are more likely to:
- Take better care of themselves
- Get more regular exercise
- Eat a healthier diet
- Have improved mental alertness
- Receive regular physical exams
- Cope better with stress & daily challenges
- Feel happier & more optimistic
- Have stronger immune systems
- Have a brighter view of the future
It is a good bet that we all know folks who are eternally ungrateful, but our experience is that most people are extremely grateful for acts of kindness, perceived blessings and life, in general.While it seems to be an easy thing for most of us to express gratitude, it may be more difficult to accept gratitude. We are taught from a young age to be humble and that good deeds are done out of our regard for fellow human beings and no recognition of our giving is needed. However, the gracious reception of gratitude may further benefit the one we sought to bless in the first place.
So, this Thanksgiving, we are planning to thank our Creator and those we love for the immense blessings they add to our lives.As well, we will be open to graciously receiving any thanks that comes our way!
Cindy & Kandy,
Transition Tamers, www.transitiontamers.com