Thankfulness for 2011

Every year around this time, I get in a self-reflective mood that lasts from Thanksgiving through the first week of January. It’s a nice time of year for reviewing accomplishments, thinking about goals, wrapping up loose ends, and making important life decisions.

Of course, the first and most important step in all of that is a spirit of appreciation, contentment, compassion and love for our life circumstances. It’s something I’m still hard at work cultivating, as reconciling a desire to achieve with a peace for what exists is a delicate balance.

Thinking back on 2011 and what I am today, there are few things that come to mind for which I’m particularly thankful:

  1. Children, who can turn a frustrating, depressing, or exhausting day into a most enjoyable evening, simply by being nothing more than themselves.
  2. The practice of mindfulness, whether through meditation, exercise, disconnection, or following intuition. It has helped me to feel more in touch with myself than ever before.
  3. Momentum, since the economic conditions for our own family and many of our friends and neighbors feel like they’re finally starting to move forward.
  4. Extended family, who I had the opportunity to visit for several weeks this year, and who are still alive and relatively healthy, which is more than many people at my age can say.
  5. The ability to continue blogging, which I don’t take for granted, with ever-increasing work, family, and personal pressures that all ask for my attention.
  6. The opportunity for anyone to chase a dream, and the increasing importance that passion plays in the success of those dreams. It’s fun to watch people full of passion rise to the top.
  7. Excitement, which is something I haven’t truly felt in a long time, like great things are just around the corner.

What are you thankful for this year?

May your Thanksgiving be filled with joy and appreciation.

Photo by tuchodi