by Tim O’Hare
This week as we celebrate Thanksgiving, people across the country will be focused on the things for which they are grateful. For the O’Hare family, we try to make gratitude a part of our daily lives — not something we reflect on one day a year.
My wife (Christen) and I regularly reflect on the many blessings we’ve been given, and are sure to thank the source of those blessings, our heavenly Father. We also work toward teaching gratitude to our young children and give them opportunities to express their thanks through prayer as well.
Living a life of gratitude is good for the soul. It’s good for the mind. And it’s good for your health. In fact, according to University of California, Berkeley’s Greater Good Science Center, researchers have found that people who consistently practice gratitude experience a number of benefits including:
• Stronger immune systems and lower blood pressure;
• Higher levels of positive emotions;
• More joy, optimism, and happiness;
• Acting with more generosity and compassion;
• Feeling less lonely and isolated.
As a means of expressing our gratitude, we make a point of giving back to our community and to individuals within our community. Every year, both as a family and as a law firm, we choose a couple of families who are not as fortunate as we are to bless at Christmastime. This year, we will be attending a special event at our church where we will buy gifts for a family, have dinner with them, let their kids play with our kids, and then present them with gifts to take home for Christmas.
With the holiday shopping season encroaching on our day of thanks, be sure to take time on Thursday to simply be thankful. Shopping can wait one more day. I encourage you to be careful that you don’t get so wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of this season that you lose your sense of gratitude for the many blessings you have been given.
From our family to yours, Happy Thanksgiving!