Winter holidays kick off the season with a Day of Thanksgiving for good reason. In the midst of all the goingson and challenges, simply expressing gratitude for large and little blessings can work wonders in restoring a healthy balance. Gratitude never fails to enrich lives.
In my travels as a publisher, I have the good fortune of connecting with amazing members of our community whose lives illustrate the value of expressing, receiving and recognizing the benefits of gratitude. Today’s blessings might arrive in the kindness of a stranger, a glorious sunrise, birdsong, children’s laughter, a great cup of coffee… we always have goodness to be thankful for. In addition to keeping a gratitude journal, I like to pause and write blessings in my heart.
Being grateful day in and day out proves to be an excellent practice at the best and worst of times and everything in-between. Remembering to say “I am grateful” grounds me and is one of two key phrases that regularly lift my life. “I forgive” is the other one. I regularly employ both as I meditate and listen to helpful audio tracks during sunset walks around Ladybird Lake.
Thanksgiving is a season ripe for recognizing and celebrating where we are personally and quietly contemplating where we wish to go from here. In this month’s feature article “Fast Track to Personal Growth,” writer Bess J.M. Hochstein reminds us of the wealth of tools available to support selfexamination, enlightenment and progress. While I find that these generally unfold step by step, a profound crisis or deeply meaningful experience may also leverage such preparation to catapult us to the next level. Anything can become a catalyst for personal growth, if we are open to it.
The principle thing, I think, is that we keep moving toward loving our self and others better while following our elected path of service to others, our community and the planet. There are beautiful ways to be involved in Austin just a tamale’s throw from your front doorstep. If you need fresh ideas, feel free to peruse our Calendar of Events near the back of the publication. If you have great ideas we have yet to hear about, please share them by writing me at Publisher@AustinAwakenings.com.
May we all be open to the good of today and what’s coming our way. Grateful expectancy is a potent engine forward.
In gratitude for all that you already are,
Shelly Searle, Publisher