COLUMN: Take time to give thanks

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By Theresa Howard

For many people, holidays are a time to come together and give thanks for what you have. Holidays are an appropriate time for family members to share something for which they are thankful. 

Be thankful for the food you are eating. Someone put a lot of time, money, and effort into your holiday feast. Be thankful for the nourishment and hard work. 

Appreciate the company. You may be spending the holiday with those you love or care for. They help to make the holiday warm and comforting and help you maintain a sense of connection or belonging. While families have their ups and downs, they often provide you with a place in the world. Give thanks to family and friends and demonstrate to them your love and appreciation.

Reflection. Think about the experiences (positive and negative) and accomplishments you have encountered this year.  

Give thanks for the health of yourself and your family and friends. Your health and the health of those you love and care for is of utmost importance. Think about all of the people who are suffering and about those who did not make it through the year because of health problems. The holidays are a time to reflect on what has been given to you over the past year as much as it is a time to appreciate what has not been taken away.

Think about the less fortunate. In the true spirit of the holidays, consider the poor, the needy, or those who have struggled financially in these difficult times. Think of all that you still have and all that you can still give to others. Give thanks for your life, your health, your loved ones, and your luxuries.