Search
  • Bethany Kregiel, LMHC

Thanksgiving: Practicing Gratitude

Have you ever noticed yourself only focusing on the things that are going wrong? Humans are hardwired with a negativity bias, a predisposition to weigh negative experiences more heavily than positive ones. This mechanism was adaptive when our ancestors had to fight off predators on a daily basis, but it’s not so adaptive these days, when we aren’t exposed to constant threat.


Even though we have this bias, we’re not powerless to it. Cultivating a sense of gratitude can help to counter our predisposition towards negativity. The upcoming Thanksgiving holiday can activate feelings of gratitude as we reflect on the people, things and experiences for which we feel grateful. In addition to the warm, fuzzy feelings that gratitude generates, creating a gratitude practice brings a variety of benefits, including better sleep, less stress and more fulfilling relationships.


There are many ways you can kick start a gratitude practice. I’ll highlight a few questions that you can consider to cultivate gratitude this holiday season:

  1. What is something that you did in the past week that you feel grateful for?

  2. What is something that someone did for you in the past week that you feel grateful for?

  3. What is something that you experienced (saw, tasted, smelled, heard or felt) in the past week that you feel grateful for?

‘Tis the season for gratitude — happy Thanksgiving!


Bethany Kriegel, LMHC, earned her master’s degree in mental health counseling from Boston College. She has experience working with adults in residential treatment settings, helping those struggling with eating disorders and obsessive-compulsive disorder, among other issues.


Thank you for your interest in our Monday Mental Health Moment. Join our mailing list for a weekly newsletter on various mental health topics, and information about upcoming groups or workshops. We promise no spam!

Recent Posts

See All

Our physical and emotional health may be more connected than you think. Someone feeling nervous will often feel the tension in their stomachs. And when they feel sad they can feel the heaviness in the

If you’re anything like me, you didn’t dread winter when you were younger because winter meant snow which meant snow days which meant unexpected and welcome time off from school. It’s only as I grew o

Tomorrow, Tuesday, January 11th is National Human Trafficking Awareness Day. Acknowledged throughout the month of January and specifically on January 11th, “human trafficking is the practice of exploi