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Gratitude For the Small Things

Food. Decorations. Quality Time. These are commonly some of the most enjoyable aspects of seeing friends and family during the holiday season. Whether you enjoy cooking Thanksgiving dinner, buying gifts for the grandchildren, or watching your favorite football team, the upcoming months are often full of memorable events that never seem to last long enough!

However, some individuals find the holiday season to be stressful or lonely. Some struggle with the reality of not spending time with family or worry that their financial plan cannot support their holiday desires. Studies suggest that the holiday season, compared to other months of the year, often creates a higher number of stressors for most Americans.

Over the past few years, other research has shown that expressing gratitude, for both the big and small things, can help an individual experience a deeper level of happiness and a lower level of stress. Business managers who “thanked” their employees on a more consistent basis saw that these employees often worked harder, and couples who expressed gratitude for their partner reported having more positivity in their relationship. While in high school, I had an assignment that instructed our class to journal about the small things we were thankful for. Yes, our instructor wanted us to focus on the small and often unnoticed pleasures we took for granted and make a list that would act as a future reminder.

I spent the following weeks analyzing my interactions, my time at school, my time at home, and the mundane events that connected these together. My list grew, and then shrunk, and then grew again. However, at the end of my time, I felt happy about the result.

I would like to share some of the things I was grateful for:

  • The power of teamwork and communication
  • The intricacies and magnitude of our solar system
  • The intellect of people who created the internet, medicine, and buildings
  • How a well-timed joke made my day

After completing this list, I found a deeper sense of gratitude and found joy in the idea that an appreciation of these seemingly small things could happen at any moment. Maybe, during this article or at a time earlier this week, you had a moment of appreciation for a small pleasure. Your list will likely be different from your spouse or grandchild – and that is what makes each person unique!

At PYA Waltman, we understand that no individual, family, or financial situation is the exact same. Our team celebrates the idea that everyone has a different list of priorities, whether it be financial or not, and that a financial plan is unique to each person. So, as the holiday season approaches and you focus on giving, saving, or spending, I would encourage you to make your own list and never pass up on the opportunity to express some things you are grateful for! No matter how big or small.

Find the original article in West Knoxville Lifestyle's November edition by clicking here.

The opinions expressed are those of PYAW’s Investment Team. The opinions referenced are as of the date of publication and are subject to change due to changes in the market or economic conditions and may not necessarily come to pass. Forward looking statements cannot be guaranteed.

 PYA Waltman Capital, LLC (“PYAW”) is an investment adviser registered with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Registration does not imply a certain level of skill or training. More information about PYAW’s investment advisory services can be found in its Form ADV Part 2, which is available upon request.  PYA-22-21