During this time of Thanksgiving, I am even more grateful for the many blessings in my life, like my husband, children, parents and extended family; my health and the health of others; a rewarding career and great team that I love; my home, clothing, and safe place to live; and this great country I call home.

While I continue to be thankful for all those things, I have been reflecting on a recent song by Tim McGraw, Humble and Kind, and his suggestion to:

“Hold the door, say "please," say "thank you"
Don't steal, don't cheat, and don't lie
I know you got mountains to climb
But always stay humble and kind”

When I practice these simple ideas, my life and relationships are so much richer. And, most of these ideas I learned a long time ago from my parents and grandparents, in Sunday School and Kindergarten. In addition to McGraw’s list, I’d add:

  • Hold the door for someone or let them step in front of you in line
  • If you don’t have something nice to say, don’t say anything at all (until you can say it constructively)
  • Be courteous and respectful to everyone you encounter (especially those who serve you coffee, check you out at the grocery store, or answer a call on the other end of the line
  • Smile at a stranger
  • Offer a hand or help someone in need
  • Share from your bounty (we have so many blessings that multiply when we share with others)
  • Pick up after yourself and leave each place better than it was when you found it
  • Say I’m sorry when you hurt someone or make a mistake
  • Say excuse me when you bump into someone or step on their toe or need to pass by

I know in the hustle and bustle of my life that I sometimes forget to practice these manners and niceties that can make a big difference in our families, communities and country today. Demonstrating these simple acts of kindness shows my respect and consideration for others and can lift someone else’s day, leaving them feeling appreciated and valued. I know that’s how I feel when I experience kindness and my day gets just little bit better.

In his song, McGraw continues, Don't take for granted the love this life gives you.” So, this Thanksgiving I plan to hug those near and dear to me, tell them I love them one more time and make someone else’s day just a little bit better by smiling and saying please and thank you. Who will join me so that others benefit from your simple acts of kindness?

Happy Thanksgiving and many blessings for just a little brighter holiday season!