Did you know that there is a difference between feeling grateful and being grateful? While we don't have total control of our feelings, we can choose to adopt a perspective, an attitude of gratitude, that helps us magnify the goodness in life and also has the power to energize, heal, and bring hope during the toughest of times. Our national holiday, Thanksgiving, was actually born out of hard times. Trials and tribulations can make us more grateful, and gratitude can help us cope with adversity better. Grateful people are more resilient to stress, both minor everyday hassles and major personal upheavals. We can choose gratitude, not in spite of difficult circumstances but because of them. In fact, sometimes people who seem to have the most challenges—such as serious illnesses—are the most grateful, as they have reframed how they think about their troubles using the language of thankfulness.
Youth In Need staff work every day with clients to help them see things differently, to find strength amid hardship, and to find meaning and hope in their lives. I am profoundly grateful for each of you. I am also deeply grateful to the many people who support you, including supervisors, support staff, and the administrative staff who are the backbone of this organization. And we couldn't do what we do without the tremendous backing, on so many levels, from our Board of Directors and Regents, and of course, our amazing donors and funders.
As we celebrate Thanksgiving this week, please know that you are all in my thoughts and prayers, and I hope you will take a moment to soak in the gratitude that I am pouring out.
"If the only prayer you ever say in your entire life is 'thank you,' that is enough." —Meister Eckhart