Focusing on gratitude has become cliché. So much so, that most of us get so busy cooking turkeys and planning our Black Friday shopping strategies that we actually forget to be thankful. While I believe that gratitude all year round has long term benefits to attitude and personal satisfaction, it is nice to take one day to especially focus on it.

However, I wish it was something we carried into the Christmas season. The unofficial start of the Christmas season is the day after Thanksgiving and the first day of Advent is the Sunday after Thanksgiving this year. I love the season of Advent, it is truly one of my favorite times of year. But I realize how much of December is cluttered with activities, many of them focusing on the acquisition of new things. Suddenly the day of gratitude is overshadowed by the worship of stuff. One of the most fanatical shopping days of the year begins just hours after our Thanksgiving dinners have been digested.

This year I’m hoping to carry the feeling of gratitude that my family and I emphasize on Thanksgiving Day throughout the whole Christmas season, an Advent of Gratitude. After all, isn’t the coming of Christ one of the greatest things to be grateful for? I encourage you to find ways to focus on gratitude in every activity and situation you find yourself. Why confine such a crucial practice as giving thanks to merely one day a year?