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Above: my daughter’s silhouette against the brilliant sunset colors over Cadillac Mountain at Acadia National Park.

This week, I have family visiting and have been just enjoying life. But even if life is treating me well, I try to stop and reflect on my blessings of the week.

Practicing my weekly ritual every Thursday, it has become a habit of mine to always remember what I am thankful for while reflecting the events of the past week.

Since starting this practice of thankfulness over two years ago, I truly believe this mindful practice has transformed my life. This practice of gratitude has caused me to have a much more positive outlook on life. Even though life is not always easy, effortless, and painless, with a grateful heart, I can still see the good, the blessing, and have hope. I know my faith in God helps me to be grateful but I know that anyone who mindfully practices thankfulness will find it a transformative influence on one’s outlook on life.

So practice gratitude. Say thank you for the little things and big things. Wake up with thanks on your lips and go to sleep with thanks in your heart.