1) When you first open your eyes in the morning, feel the breath of life in your chest. Say a silent prayer thanking your Higher Power for this new day, for all that is good in your life, and for the challenges before you that are your teachers.
2) Light a candle in thanks for your recovery — in honor and recognition that you made it, you are here, growing and discovering. Light it also in honor of anyone you love who isn’t here on this earth anymore, so that you can offer them your appreciation for having known and loved them, no matter how they made their exit.
3) Hug someone you love. There’s a secret here: Hug them so you are left ear to left ear, because then your hug is truly heart to heart. (This is the opposite of the more traditional, right ear to right ear hug.) Take 3 deep breaths together. Tell them how grateful you are to know them.
4) Consider how you can be of service to someone today, in any small or great way. Ask yourself, Who can I help today? And then do it.
5) About the food you eat, take a moment to give deep thanks to the journey that food took to reach you. Ultimately, the sun gave life to all the bounty before you as it journeyed from seed to fruition. Think of the many hands the food passed through to be at your table. Thank them all.
6) Decide to eat a conscious feast! This is really fun, and will make it a Thanksgiving you never forget. Eat slowly, and taste each bite as if it were your last meal on the planet. Savor each bite. Be present to the tastes, and to the people with you. Give thanks for this experience.
7) Raise your glass of water in toast to the life that nourishes us! Can you think of drinking anything better than water with your meal this Thanksgiving? I can’t. It’s the most generous element, so life giving. You will feel amazing drinking water with your meal. If you want to supercharge your water, write one word on a piece of paper, like PEACE, LOVE, or HAPPINESS and tape it to your glass, so the water receives the vibration of your intention.
8) Count your blessings. It seems so simple, but how often do we really do it? I suggest writing them down. Write down each blessing in your life, and then read the list aloud. This is fun to do in a group!
9) Take your time. Life pushes us to be so fast. Today, slow it all down. No rush. Just amble. Amble from here to there, from the car to the house. Saunter. Stroll. Feel the air on your skin. Feel the joy of walking. Give thanks for it.
10) Forgive somebody. It’s so easy to hold grudges. How about today you let one go? You know, that person who drives you crazy is your greatest teacher. That person who did that thing to you, they were just unconscious. Forgive them. Carry on living your gorgeous life and thank them for the part they played in your growth.
11) Pick up the phone. Call the people you love that you’re grateful to know, and tell them so. I dare say we’re addicted to short, cold messages in our culture with email and texts. I bet some of you can’t remember the last time your phone actually rang and it wasn’t just somebody asking if you’re registered to vote. Call your friends. Call your family. Call the people you love and tell them you are thinking of them.
12) When you go to sleep tonight, relive your day of giving thanks. Remember that we always have a choice, to complain or to give thanks, and see how you feel after a day of consciously choosing to give thanks. A day of choosing not to criticize, choosing not to blame. See how you feel after a day of choosing love, choosing peace, choosing presence.