A Month of Thanksgiving

It’s November. How is it possibly November already?! Is time going by at warp speed for everyone else?

October is certainly my favorite month of the year, but that period between Halloween and Thanksgiving holds a dear place in my heart as well. I love Thanksgiving. I love that it’s about family, food, and presence…not presents.

This month is a great time to reflect on gratitude and the overabundance of mercy and grace we experience in our lives on a daily basis. It’s a reminder of what we should be doing every day of the year.

At the end of every BodyFlow class I teach, there’s always 5-8 minutes of relaxation. I dim the lights, play the beautiful relaxing music Les Mills has provided me, and I instruct my students to lay down on their yoga mats and clear their minds. I lead them through a quick body assessment, encouraging them to mentally check-in with each section of their body and to let go of any stress or tension they’re holding on to. And then I always add that if they can’t quiet their mind, to think about 3 things they are grateful for: whether it be a person, a memory, or even just this very moment of uninterrupted peace. 

I think often times we’re so focused on results and “proof” that we’re working out and eating right, that we fail to appreciate what our bodies can do. The little milestones and improvements sometimes go unnoticed. Sometimes we don’t even realize that a movement has gotten easier, or a weight seems lighter, or we’re stretching an inch further, holding a plank a few seconds longer. It may not seem like some award-worthy improvement, but it’s certainly an improvement to our fitness. Every little bit matters.

And isn’t life like that? A bunch of little bitty moments make up an entire life.

In my house, above our big picture window in the living room, I have a sign from Kathryn at  Ava Berry Lane that I purchased after I was going through a very rough time in my life. My parents had moved 1000 miles away, I had a missed miscarriage, and my gratitude and appreciation for life was waning. I was bitter.  The sign is simply a lyric from a Matt Redman song, it says, “10,000 reasons for my heart to find.”

I love having this displayed in my living room because it’s a reminder that even when I’m having the worst day ever, there is ALWAYS something to be grateful for. Even if it’s just something incredibly simple like the colors of Fall, coffee, or even breathing.

I encourage everyone to think about the LITTLE things! When we can appreciate and reflect on the little things, we prepare our hearts to be open to the bigger things.

Every day, even on your darkest day, there are at least 10,000 things to still be grateful for. Remember this throughout the holiday season.

Meridith Oram
Meridith Oram is an ACE-Certified Health Coach at Below the Fork where she encourages women to love themselves towards healthy. She is married with two boys, and lives outside of Philadelphia. She earned a B.A. in Communications from Villanova University. Meridith writes about FASTer Way to Fat Loss, fitness, nutrition, Celiac Disease, and easy (but delicious!) gluten-free recipes at belowthefork.com. Follow her @belowthefork on all social channels.

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