Tidewater Times November 2019

Page 75

Practicing Gratitude by Michael Valliant

“If the only prayer you said was thank you, that would be enough.” This quote is attributed to Christian mystic Meister Eckhart. He’s trying to point out that living a life of gratitude is sufficient. November is a month free of commercial holidays, where the big celebration on the American calendar is one of thanks. Right up until people go out right after Thanksgiving dinner, the same night, or the next day, to push and pull their way toward Black Friday sales. What if, instead, we used the whole month of November to cultivate an attitude of gratitude?

Brené Brown, best-selling author, researcher and storyteller, says cultivating gratitude is much more than attitude. “Practicing gratitude invites joy into our lives. Practice is the part that really changed my life, that really changed my family and the way we live every day,” Brown said. “When I say practice gratitude, I don’t mean ‘the-attitude-of-gratitude’ or feeling grateful, I mean practicing gratitude.” She talks about having a tangible gratitude practice, such as keeping a gratitude journal, or using certain times of day to say something you