Kim Hudson: The more you share, the more you feel

I pretty much love all the holidays. I just do. I’m a traditionalist at heart and holidays are so rich with tradition. Thanksgiving is definitely one of my favorites. It’s a day to be thankful and give thanks – something I wish we did more of all the time.

I think if we are honest though there are seasons in all of our lives when we just don’t feel very thankful. There may be something going on in our personal or professional lives, with our children or other family members. Or maybe it’s the overall state of the world.

The ever increasing violence, poverty, disease, homelessness, etc., that seems to be so prevalent in our society today sometimes leaves me feeling depressed instead of thankful.

And let’s face it, this time of year we are bombarded with holiday commercials, wish lists and catalogues that can leave us feeling overwhelmed with what we want instead of thankful for what we have.

As a parent I struggle with the best ways to teach my children to be thankful.

Sitting in church this past weekend I was moved by a video clip that was shown. We’ve all heard the adage,” is your glass half empty or half full.” It’s a great visual for how we look at life. Do you see things in a more positive or negative light?

But this video didn’t concentrate on whether the glass was half empty or half full. This video was about being grateful for what was in your glass.

I think too often we get distracted by what is missing from our glass. We see those around us whose glasses seem to be overflowing and we feel resentful or envious or angry.

We see others whose glasses are almost empty and we feel relief that our glass has more. We are busy rushing around living very full, very busy lives and we sometimes miss what is so obviously right in front of us – we miss what is in our own glass.

It doesn’t matter if the glass is half empty or half full. What matters – what should matter – is what is in the glass at all. The food we eat, the home we have, the family and friends we call our own – all of those are in our glass. Our freedoms, our rights are in there too.

Yes, all of our glasses have things in them that we don’t want – sickness, grief, worry, stress, desire, greed. But when we focus on those things we forget to be grateful. We forget to give thanks and show our children what gratitude really looks like.

As we sit around the table this Thanksgiving – whatever that looks like for you – I hope we remember to be grateful. Grateful for whatever is in our glass whether it is overflowing or almost empty.

Gratitude is like a smile – it’s contagious. And the more you share it the more you feel it.  Try it.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Contact Kim Hudson at tkhudson@comcast.net.

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