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November 2017

November 2017

I recently asked my friends and family what comes to mind when they think of November, and Thanksgiving topped everyone’s list. While the same holds true for me, and its theme — to count your blessings and be outwardly and unabashedly thankful — should be celebrated, I can’t help but wonder why this message isn’t so top of mind the other 29 days this month (or even the other 364 days a year).

It’s not just the person on the other end of appreciation that benefits greatly. We also gain much from feeling and showing gratitude. Sometimes it’s obvious, we’ll feel happy about making someone’s day or maybe even gain acknowledgement for our proclamation, which does feel good! But perhaps more importantly, there are real benefits in all aspects of health.

According to Amy Morin, a psychotherapist and the author of 13 Things Mentally Strong People Don’t Do, the following are a few of the ways keeping the theme of Thanksgiving close to us every day can help us. Gratitude:

  • Opens the door to more relationships.
  • Improves physical health and psychological health.
  • Enhances empathy and reduces aggression.
  • Grateful people sleep better.
  • Improves self-esteem.
  • Increases mental strength.

The YMCA of the Fox Cities’ (our cover story) programs couldn’t be a more appropriate fit in the month known for being thankful. They promote holistic and total wellness including spirit, mind and body, and they offer the community a welcoming, all-inclusive space: a perfect message this November and beyond.

Happy “thanks-giving” all year long!

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