Hold on, hold on. I’m not advocating for a vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. I’m also not celebrating meat, per se. I love a good Thanksgiving dinner.

But, in order for us to truly celebrate this Thanksgiving holiday with family and maybe even some friends, something has to be sacrificed.

Does That Sound Familiar?

Perhaps you aren’t following me just yet and that’s fine. I would actually be surprised if you were.

Allow me a little bit more latitude, please.

When that ham, sumptuous turkey, and all the fixings come out on the table, your mouth starts watering, you see that heaping bowl of gravy, succulent mushrooms floating at the surface, your stomach roils in anticipation.

Hang on a sec … okay, okay, I got a little carried away. I’m better now. (Just had to grab a sandwich.)

In order to have this amazing meal, it’s not just the turkey that gets sacrificed; it’s also time. It might be you, your spouse, your mother or father, sister, brother-in-law, sister-in-law, or even a friend or bunch of friends and family. These men and women are what make Thanksgiving so special and it’s not just about the company we keep.

It’s also about that wonderful meal that brings everyone together for this once a year holiday.

It Easy to Take Things for Granted

I know because I do it. All the time.

I take my husband for granted. I take my children for granted. I take my friends for granted. For many years, too, I took my fellow employees, coworkers, supervisors, bosses, and so many others for granted.

I’ve done it and I’ve seen it done over and over.

If you’re one of those people who don’t do much to prepare the Thanksgiving dinner but enjoy it, it’s easy to lose sight of just how much work goes into preparing each of those dishes. It can take hours upon hours just to prepare, cook, and tend to the turkey itself, let alone make the stuffing, prepare the cranberries, cook the sweet potatoes, and all the other fixins.

How Much Do We Take for Granted at Work?

We take some things for granted in our personal lives -with our families and friends- but also with our team. The employees who work for you, the staff, even all the way down to the entry-level workers and janitorial crew are people we often tend to overlook.

Yet, as the end of the year approaches and we begin looking at our budgets to see if we hit our goals, exceeded them, and what plans we’re setting for in 2020, it’s a good idea to realize that whatever “feast” is being presented on those charts and spreadsheets, a whole heck of a lot when into putting it all together.

It’s great for people to receive a paycheck. However, that is not gratitude. That is something they earned.

A “congratulations” or “thank you for all your hard work this year” or “I just want to tell you how important you are to this company” are simple words of thanksgiving for the men and women who make up our teams.

Make This a Habit

Being grateful should not be a one-time event. It should become habitual, a part of us. Not only does it tell those around us just how valuable they are, it also makes them feel like what they do matters.

Because it does.

Not only that, it also has a direct and measurable impact on productivity. Believe it or not, employees who honestly feel that their boss or employer (or company as an entity) appreciates the work they do, they tend to work harder, strive more, and boost productivity every day.

This doesn’t mean you have to buy gift cards, give people a few extra hours off every month, or other “rewards.” It’s simply referring to the act of gratitude, the “good job” or “way to go” or “I recognized the effort you put in.”

Consider the Gratitude You’ve Received

There’s an age old saying that goes, “It’s better to give than to receive.” There is great truth and value in that simple statement.

When you give gratitude, you get back something even greater. The people who work for you, your family, your friends, and others who are on the receiving end of that gratitude will respect you, appreciate you, and strive to work harder because you noticed how much they cared in the first place.

This Thanksgiving, let’s all take some time to work gratitude into our daily vocabulary, at home and at work. If it’s not something you’re used to doing, it’s just like any other muscle: the more you use it, the stronger it becomes.

Happy Thanksgiving and thank you for being a part of my life. AND.. just to show you how grateful I am to have you in my world, I’m sharing this AMAZING recipe for Pumpkin Rolls. ….You’ll love them.

Cynthia Corsetti is an Executive Coach and Speaker. If you’d like to learn more on how her C.A.R.E. to Engage system can help you create an engaged workforce in your organization, you can email her at: cynthia@cynthiacorsetti.com

PS..I’m an open networker and I love to connect. Please join me over on LinkedIn and FB so we can take this journey together!